Pep Guardiola has conceded defeat in the battle to reduce match congestion, telling talkSPORT the problem has persisted ‘from the days of Sir Alex Ferguson until now’.
A very different Manchester City side left the FA Cup at the hands of Liverpool after a thrilling 3-2 defeat at Wembley.
City had emerged from a grueling Champions League game with Atletico Madrid last time out, losing starting XI Kevin De Bruyne and Kyle Walker to injury.
That game was Wednesday, with City replaying on Sunday, and Guardiola was less than happy with Chelsea facing a Tuesday-Sunday schedule, giving them more time to rest and recuperate.
However, the Spaniard has all but given up trying to convince broadcasters to prioritize players, saying the problem existed even before legendary Manchester United manager Ferguson retired almost a decade ago.
“Every season when you get into that position, it’s like that,” he said. “Do you think saying something here in a talkSPORT write-up is going to change anything? Why?
“Absolutely not [going to change]. Sir Alex Ferguson started complaining about the schedules and Jose Mourinho and all the managers who will be playing in the other, so that’s what it is, the schedule.
“And because the broadcasters are commenting without thinking about what the players need or what the Premier League needs.
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“We play Wednesday, we could play Sunday, huh? Chelsea play on Tuesday, we play on Saturday, one more day, are you playing on Sunday? No, play on Saturday.
“Crystal Palace didn’t play a game in midweek, and playing Tuesday Chelsea, could play today and we still have a game to recover maybe Kevin or a shot.
“So why play on Saturday? TVs, money, rights, as everyone is concerned, me first.
“It is what it is, so it makes no sense for managers to go here, even Jurgen [Klopp] talked about this because it will not happen because the interest is not the players, the interest is to play this game and the number of audience that we have, the number of advantages that we have.
“It’s been happening from Sir Alex Ferguson until now.
“Today we have 14 or 15 players available for the first team, we have three days without replay and we couldn’t change a single thing in a single session to prepare for the final so that’s how it is.”
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