Pep roulette to go into overdrive as Guardiola reveals his team ‘won’t be ready’ for Burnley and Chelsea

Pep roulette to go into overdrive

One of the big changes to the Premier League, when the competition restarts today (June 17), will be the new rule regarding five substitutes.

For the first time in Premier League history, all teams will be able to make up to five changes each match.

Why has the rule regarding subs been changed? The aim is to help teams cope with a predicted uptick in injuries once football restarts.

Manchester City take on Arsenal today at the Etihad Stadium, and City manager Pep Guardiola – who is famed for rotating his squad using his ‘Pep roulette’ – has voiced his prediction that teams will suffer more injuries than usual in the upcoming weeks:

Even with [five substitutions each] there will be a lot of injuries.

You can play a game after three weeks of holidays but we were two months of holidays, lying on the sofa, doing nothing much, and that’s why I think the players are not fully fit.

Pep Guardiola

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 30: Pep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City looks on prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Manchester City at St. James Park on November 30, 2019 in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Man City ‘won’t be ready’ for Burnley and Chelsea

After the Arsenal match tonight, Man City take on Burnley on Monday, June 22. Then on Thursday, June 25, City travel to London to play away at Chelsea.

According to Guardiola, Man City are going to struggle to be ready for the matches against Burnley and Chelsea:

I think we are ready to play one game, but three days after [playing] another one and then four days after that [playing] another one, we are not ready. Not just Man City, all the teams.

We cannot use the ice baths. It is not allowed so I don’t know now [what we will do]. We have to rotate and use absolutely all the players.

We have to adapt so there is not another issue, pray a little bit and be lucky.


Pep Guardiola’s press conference before Arsenal

Watch the full press conference below.

Chris Wilder

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 28: Chris Wilder the head coach / manager of Sheffield United during the Premier League match between Sheffield United and Liverpool FC at Bramall Lane on September 28, 2019 in Sheffield, United Kingdom. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

Sheffield United & Aston Villa opposed 5 subs change

While Guardiola has expressed his fears on how many injuries may be sustained once football restarts, many may consider that Man City are in a far better position to deal with this problem than others.

Man City are blessed with one of the deepest and most talented squads in the division – if not the best squad.

By contrast, Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder and Aston Villa boss Dean Smith have voiced their concerns with how the new five subs change will benefit teams like Man City.

Wilder commented: “It favours the powerful clubs. We don’t think that is the right way to go about it.”

Villa’s Smith told the press: “I suppose it helps the clubs with the bigger squads. There was talk to change it because there is more risk of injury but having more subs doesn’t help that. I just wanted it to stay as it was. I think Sheffield United were the same.”


Also see: Why Leroy Sane & Aymeric Laporte are unlikely to start for Man City vs Arsenal.

Manchester City vs Arsenal preview: Premier League live streaming and betting tips.

The Premier League returns: Predictions for every team ahead of the restart.

This article was edited by Benjamin Newman.

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