Pep Guardiola has stated his desire to use January’s relaxed schedule to City’s advantage on the training field.

At present, the Blues have three games across the calendar month – which could rise to four if we secure passage to the FA Cup fourth round with victory over Huddersfield Town this Sunday.

It’s a welcomed break in the regime which saw us play nine matches across December – including our triumphant inclusion in the FIFA Club World Cup in Saudi Arabia.

And the boss believes having more time than usual to prepare for matches could benefit his squad for the second half of the season.

“We have more time to train and remember things that you cannot do normally,” he explained.

“Normally you have to do things we don’t have time to do it in the busy schedule. Same time we don’t lose what we do every single day.

“I think the Premier League took a great decision. To make it intense on Boxing Day and Christmas time like it’s always been.


“Then in January make a break for the teams. Especially playing European competitions. It helps us in February a little bit fresh mentally. It is what it is.

“In the past there were more games and we did it and we won a lot even in the tough period. It’s good now with the FA Cup to retain the title and arrive as far as possible.

“After, we have a really important game with Newcastle then refresh. After we have two weeks to refresh, especially our minds.”

Watch Pep’s pre-match press conference in the video player above.