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‘It is what it is’ – Guardiola concedes defeat in battle to ease fixture congestion

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Pep Guardiola has conceded defeat in the battle to ease fixture congestion, telling talkSPORT the problem has persisted ‘from Sir Alex Ferguson’s time until now’.

A much-changed Manchester City side exited the FA Cup at the hands of Liverpool following a thrilling 3-2 defeat at Wembley.

City lost out to Liverpool despite a late fightback

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City lost out to Liverpool despite a late fightback

And Guardiola was unhappy with the rotations he had to make

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And Guardiola was unhappy with the rotations he had to make

City had come off the back of a gruelling Champions League tie with Atletico Madrid last time out, losing starting eleven regulars Kevin De Bruyne and Kyle Walker to injury.

That match was on Wednesday, with City playing again on Saturday, and Guardiola was less than happy with the fact Chelsea faced a Tuesday to Sunday schedule, giving them more time to rest and recover.

However, the Spaniard has as good as given up on trying to convince the broadcasters to put the players first, claiming the problem has existed even before Manchester United’s legendary manager Ferguson retired nearly a decade ago.

“Every season when you arrive in that position it’s like this,” he said. “Do you think saying something here in a talkSPORT writing is going to change something? Why?

“Absolutely not [going to change]. Sir Alex Ferguson started to complain about the schedules and Jose Mourinho and all the managers who will play in the other one, so it is what it is, the schedule.

“And because we have the broadcasters comment not thinking about what the players need or the Premier League needs.


The Spaniard couldn’t see any sense behind the scheduling

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The Spaniard couldn’t see any sense behind the scheduling

“We play Wednesday we could play on Sunday, yeah? Chelsea play on Tuesday we play Saturday, have one more day, do you play on Sunday? No, play Saturday.

“Crystal Palace didn’t play one game in midweek, and play Tuesday Chelsea, could play today and we have one more game to recover maybe Kevin or a knock. 

“So why play Saturday? TVs, moneys, rights, like everyone is involved, me the first.

Guardiola has given up asking for more protection for his players

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Guardiola has given up asking for more protection for his players

“It’s what it is, so it’s no sense for the managers to go here, even Jurgen [Klopp] talked about that because it’s not going to happen because the interest is not the players the interest is playing that game and how many audience we have, how many benefits we have.

“It happens from Sir Alex Ferguson time to right now.

“Today we have 14 or 15 players available for the first team, we have three days without recovery and we could not change one thing one single session to prepare for the final so it is what it is.”

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