Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Guardiola: City Have Depth and Talent to Battle on Four Fronts

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Guardiola: City Have Depth and Talent to Battle on Four Fronts

Article excerpt

PEP Guardiola insists Manchester City have the strength and quality needed to keep pushing Liverpool in the Premier League even as they continue to fight on four fronts.

City will face Burton in the semifinals of the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night, days after thrashing Rotherham 7-0 to advance to the fourth round of the FA Cup.

But Liverpool, who sit four points clear of City, have only the league and Champions League to worry about after a much-weakened side were knocked out of the FA Cup by Wolves on Monday.

"If everyone is fit and not injured we can cope with it," Guardiola said.

"The problem is if you have 10 injured players, it's almost impossible. When everyone is fit, it's better. Without that competition, if we had just one competition to play in, I could play with the same 11 or same 12.

"Now everyone is involved. the players don't know who will play against Burton. Then after four days we have another final at home to Wolves."

And though his side could face as many as 65 fixtures if they went all the way in the cups, Guardiola said he would rather be fighting on multiple fronts as he believes momentum can apply across all competitions.

"I prefer it, definitely," he said. "I like to be in the four competitions as far as possible. When Wigan put us out of the FA Cup last season I was sad. But since I arrived, the first season in the Carabao Cup we played against United and played with a lot of young players, the same the second season, the same the third season, that's what has happened. "I take the cups seriously. Against Rotherham, for example, we played with nine players who didn't play against Liverpool and the nine were a good selection. It was perfect for the rhythm for Kevin (De Bruyne), (Ilkay) Gundogan, Nico (Otamendi), Kyle (Walker) - perfect."

Today's game will be an unfamiliar challenge for Guardiola, who admitted he had never seen any footage of Burton in action until Tuesday morning. …

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