Men's Team

Pep Guardiola: Squad rotation working well

Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City’s rotation policy is paying off as he bids to keep his players fresh whilst we remain in the hunt to lift four trophies this season.

City have played three games a week for the vast majority of the 2020/21 campaign, with Guardiola regularly making changes to a side that has lost just once 31 games in all competitions.

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Raheem Sterling was the latest player to be rested as Guardiola made seven alterations for the win over Fulham, where the in form Ilkay Gundogan and Riyad Mahrez were both unused substitutes.

With Nathan Ake closing in on a return to match action, the Catalan will soon have a full complement of players to choose from and he says utilising the entire squad is a must if the Club are to be successful in multiple competitions,

“Nathan Ake will soon be here too,” he said after the victory at Craven Cottage.

“Everybody wants to be involved from the beginning. Now, it’s perfect because we rotate six, seven players and everyone's fit. It’s working well.

“To win the title, especially the Premier League and the other titles we need everyone, for the best for the club and the best for the team.

“That way we can compete in all competitions until the end.”

Seven changes and a switch to a 3-5-2 formation did little to disrupt City against Fulham.

Despite not being at our fluid best in the first half, the league leaders improved significantly after the break, scoring three times in 15 minutes to ease to a comfortable victory.

It was a performance which pleased Guardiola and he was particularly impressed with the efforts of Benjamin Mendy and Ferran Torres – two of the beneficiaries of his rotation – who completed 90 minutes for only the third time in 2021.

“Gabriel [Jesus] was brilliant, Ferran as well,” Pep added.

“Everyone has their chance to play. They have to be ready and try.

“[I am] delighted for the performance of all them - especially the guys like Benjamin and Ferran who haven't played for a while.

“They were so, so good, all of them, so brilliant.”

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