MX23RW : Wednesday, October 21 19:03:02| >> :60:2757:2757:

Pep Guardiola: 'Man City do not have the squad to play every three days'

Pep Guardiola: 'Man City do not have the squad to play every three days'
© Reuters
He is currently without seven first team players.

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola admits his squad is stretched to the limit after their opening win over Wolves.

City claimed an impressive 3-1 win at Molineux as Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden and Gabriel Jesus struck in their Premier League opener on Monday.

They remain without Joao Cancelo, Bernardo Silva, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Sergio Aguero, Aymeric Laporte and Eric Garcia while Ilkay Gundogan is self isolating after testing positive for coronavirus.

City start their defence of the Carabao Cup against Bournemouth on Thursday and Guardiola knows they cannot afford to lose others.

"All we want is the seven players that are out to come back," Guardiola said.

"Now we have a competition that we cannot spend the energy that we spent today, before Leicester, so we're going to play mostly academy players and try to keep the energy for the Premier League.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Manchester City – Premier League – Molineux
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on the touchline during the Premier League match at Wolves (Marc Atkins/PA)

"With this lack of preparation and seven players out and not coming back soon, we have to keep the players from Monday as safe as possible.

"We will see how many are available, how they recover. We have just three days. We won the Carabao Cup three times in a row and we would like to continue but we don't have the players in this period to play every three days."

At Molineux, De Bruyne was brought down by Romain Saiss and then scored from the spot after 20 minutes before Foden made it 2-0, finishing off a flowing move.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Manchester City – Premier League – Molineux
Romain Saiss (left) fouls Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne, leading to City's first goal (Nick Potts/PA)

Raul Jimenez pulled a goal back for Wolves in the second half but Jesus' deflected strike settled the game in injury time.

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo, who is close to signing Barcelona defender Nelson Semedo, said: "It's clear we performed better in the second half.

"We adjusted better, we created chances and moments. We scored late and we knew one goal would change everything.

"We should do better, especially defensively. The result cannot stop us from going in this direction. I take the positives but to play well we must defend better."

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Kevin De Bruyne scores for Manchester City against Wolverhampton Wanderers on September 21, 2020
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Everton5410147713
2Aston Villa44001221012
3Liverpool53111313010
4Leicester CityLeicester530212849
5Arsenal53028629
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves530257-29
7Tottenham HotspurSpurs522115878
8Chelsea522113948
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham521211747
10Leeds UnitedLeeds52129907
11Manchester CityMan City42117707
12Southampton521289-17
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle521279-27
14Crystal Palace521268-27
15Manchester UnitedMan Utd4202912-36
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton5113911-24
17West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom5023513-82
18Burnley401338-51
19Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd501427-51
20Fulham5014412-81

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