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  • David Tyrer

Guardiola bemoans injuries ahead of crunch title period

With a squad valued at close to £1 billion, and with more full-backs and midfielders than you can shake a stick at, you'd think that the Man City manager would be fairly happy.

But, as we've seen in the past 12 months, throw a few injuries to key personnel into the mix and his ability to coach performances out of lesser players seriously comes under scrutiny.

There's long been a whisper among football fans that, while Guardiola is a genius coach, his ability to get quality out of players only extends as far as quality players.

So with the news that Rodri and Zinchenko are both out for a month or so, the Man City manager was almost certain to be throwing hints to the club's owners about spending in January, after only spending a measly £120-odd million on first-teamers in the summer.

Yes, City have had their fair share of injury woes this season, but that's what all those players are for - to cover for injury, rotation, suspension, etc.

The Spanish coach was at it in the press yesterday, prior to their morning kick off today. He said: "When I'm thinking after the international break - November to February - yes I'm a little bit concerned because in a few positions we don't have enough players.

"We are in a bad period in that sense. We can't start complaining, 'oh what bad luck'. In a few positions there are not many but we have incredibly good players. We're going with them."

Much like City, Liverpool have had injuries this season too, with Alisson (let's not forget, the best keeper in world football) being out for over 2 months and having only just returned.

We've also lost Joel Matip, Mo Salah, Bobby Firmino at times. Whilst Xherdan Shaqiri has yet to feature at all, and Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are only just really returning from injuries sustained in the last couple of seasons.

The difference is though, Jurgen Klopp has faith in his squad, and his coaching, to get the best from these players and will only enter the transfer market as a very last resort. Or, more importantly, if there is genuine quality readily available.

But Guardiola was keen to bemoan the lack of activity from the club ahead of Janaury, even at this early stage. Stating that it's unlikely anything will happen, because the club have yet to suggest any alternatives.

He continued: "I think we are not going to buy (in January). The club didn't introduce to me the players they thought could help us. So without that it's not going to happen.

"Our need is not just for six months, it's for a long time and the important players will not be sold (in January). We are going to stay all the season, I think, with all the players we have right now."

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