Pep Guardiola says ‘no excuses’ as Manchester City prepare for moment of truth – Reuters News in France and abroad

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has told his players there will be ‘no excuses’ if his battered side fail in their pursuit of the triple trophy.

City face Liverpool in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley on Saturday, just three days after their stormy Champions League stint against Atletico Madrid.

The game is the fourth in a 12-day streak in which City also played the first leg of their quarter-final against Atletico and a dramatic 2-2 draw with Liverpool in the Premier League.


“I told the players, I don’t want excuses,” Guardiola said on Friday.

“The FA Cup semi-finals are always tough against this team, even with the best players fit and rested.

“I’ve learned as a manager that when you get to the later stages of any competition, you adapt to the schedule. If you want to complain (for a safety net), you are making a mistake. It’s like that. »

He added: “We have fought every season like this and we are going through, and we are going to perform well. »

Kevin De Bruyne and Kyle Walker are major doubts for Saturday.

Both men were substituted after suffering injuries in Wednesday’s heated Champions League clash in the Spanish capital.

This match ended 0–0 but City progressed to the semi-finals with a 1–0 win on aggregate.

Neither player was able to take part as City held a training session at Millwall on Friday after traveling directly to London from Spain.

Guardiola has confirmed playmaker De Bruyne needed stitches in a foot injury while Walker suffered a sprained ankle.

“They didn’t practice today. We’ll see tomorrow but apparently it would be so close after what happened on Wednesday,” Guardiola said.

The bad-tempered affair with Atletico ended in a melee involving several players from both sides in injury time and further scuffles broke out in the tunnel afterwards.

Guardiola wouldn’t comment immediately after the game and was still in no mood to after two days of deliberation.

“That’s in the past,” he said. “I don’t talk about it. We have an important game tomorrow. »

One player who was able to train on Friday was defender Ruben Dias, who was an unused midweek substitute after being out since early March with a hamstring injury.

Guardiola said: “He trained today. It was his third session with us. »

Last weekend’s 2-2 draw with Liverpool left the defending champions just a point clear of their Premier League title rivals with seven games remaining.

Liverpool also qualified for the Champions League semi-finals this week with a 6-4 aggregate win over Benfica.

The semi-final at Wembley will either end Liverpool’s bid for an unprecedented treble or dash City’s hopes of becoming just the second English side to win the prized Premier League, Champions League and FA treble Cup.

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Pep Guardiola says ‘no excuses’ as Manchester City prepare for moment of truth – Reuters News in France and abroad