Speaking to the press ahead of Man City’s looming return to Premier League action against Arsenal this evening, manager Pep Guardiola has admitted to one niggling doubt ahead of the encounter – claiming that we were ‘worried‘ about player’s fitness levels and the ‘incredible‘ lack of preparation.
The Sky Blues go toe-to-toe with Mikel Arteta’s side tonight in a bid to kick their season resumption off with a convincing victory, but Guardiola appears to have a few niggling doubts when it comes to overall fitness and the potential for injuries.
Will City complete the Carabao, FA Cup and Champions League treble this season?
Yes, 100%, if the competitions get underway smoothly
Indeed, after a two-month lay-off, the Spaniard claims that English teams have had little time to prepare for the congested fixture schedule compared to the likes of Spain or Germany – who had ‘five or six weeks‘ to train and become fully fit compared to England’s recent return to action.
“We were worried with these three weeks, the incredible lack of preparation,” Guardiola explained via the Daily Mail.
“It’s not like in Spain or Germany, where they worked for five or six weeks.
“We know it is not enough but it is what is. All the people with their own businesses and shops, they have to adapt, everyone has suffered in this situation personally and economically, and we have to adapt.
“They [teams] are training well but I don’t know exactly their physical condition and for how many minutes they will be in the high level.”
City, having already won the Carabao Cup this campaign, beating Aston Villa 2-1 at Wembley, could be in contention for a treble depending on how events unfold – with the FA Cup set to resume and the Champions League potentially at a later date in a 12-day mini tournament format.
Heading into the Arsenal encounter, we have won three out of our last four matches in all competitions – including great wins at Wembley and the Bernabeu.
However, our very last match before the postponement was a 2-0 derby loss away to Man United, with City now looking to get back to winning ways.
Given the precariousness surrounding how this season will unfold, our quest for a treble could prove to be an interesting one.