Pep Guardiola has slammed the Premier League over Manchester City’s festive fixture list, with the champions playing twice in less than 48 hours over a congested period for the club.
Man City closed the gap on league leaders Liverpool with a hard-fought victory over second-placed Leicester on Saturday evening, though their resources will be tested to the limit over the Christmas period following some unfavourable scheduling of fixtures.
Guardiola’s side travel to Molineux to face Wolves for a 19:45 GMT kick off on Friday 27th December, before hosting in-form Sheffield United two days later with kick-off scheduled at the Etihad for 18:00 GMT.
The two fixtures come less than 48 hours apart, and the City boss has slammed the Premier League for providing his side with a lack of recovery time at a crucial part of the season, saying he will have to send his players to ‘the fridge’ to aid their recovery.
“I wrote a letter to the Premier League to say thank-you and we’re going to the fridge after Wolves to get ready for Sheffield United,” said Guardiola.
“Sunday is a day off, we’re training the 23rd and 24th. The night of the 24th is off, the morning of 25th off. Then 26th training and 27th we play Wolves.”
Midfielder Kevin de Bruyne echoed his manager’s views over their festive fixtures, admitting his side must find a way to manage as they bid to keep their faint title hopes alive.
“The first game is in five or six days, so that’s okay,” said De Bruyne. “The other one – I don’t know what to do. We’ll see how everybody feels after 48 hours.
“Normally it would be impossible to play, but it’s the schedule and we just have to find a way to manage. Hopefully everybody feels alright for these two games, but obviously we’re going to have to change a few players.”