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Sport Pep Guardiola insists he will rotate Man City side for Gladbach trip

23:17  21 february  2021
23:17  21 february  2021 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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Pep Guardiola throwing a ball: MailOnline logo © Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo

Pep Guardiola reveals he will rotate his side again for Manchester City's Champions League tie with Borussia Moenchengladbach after the Premier League leaders won at Arsenal.

The City manager made five changes to his side for Sunday's 1-0 victory at the Emirates Stadium which came courtesy of Raheem Sterling's second-minute header.

Kevin de Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan, who have both had recent injury woes, started the Arsenal match while Fernandinho, John Stones and Oleksandr Zinchenko also started meaning Kyle Walker, Phil Foden and Sergio Aguero were unused on Sunday.

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Pep Guardiola throwing a ball: Pep Guardiola admits he will rotate his Manchester City side for the Moenchengladbach game © Provided by Daily Mail Pep Guardiola admits he will rotate his Manchester City side for the Moenchengladbach game a group of people playing a game of football: Guardiola made five changes for City's win at Arsenal on Sunday via Raheem Sterling's winner © Provided by Daily Mail Guardiola made five changes for City's win at Arsenal on Sunday via Raheem Sterling's winner

But despite the win, Guardiola claims his side suffered against Mikel Arteta's Arsenal and some players will need extra recovery ahead of Wednesday's European tie.

The Spaniard told Sky Sports: 'It was hard like we expected it would be. We suffered a lot. It's difficult to play against Arsenal and Mikel, that's why I give the players incredible credit for this victory.

'People look at our run of wins and think it's so easy. I didn't expect it. I'm more than grateful for these players for what they're doing, but winning these games 1-0 is what we need to do.

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a group of football players on a field: Liverpool Predicted XI: Manchester City (H)

'Fernandinho commanded absolutely everything in the middle. We need everyone. Now having a game every three days with travel, I'm going to have to rotate the team. It's impossible to sustain this rhythm.

Guardiola picked Kevin de Bruyne (right) and Ilkay Gundogan at Arsenal despite recent injuries © Provided by Daily Mail Guardiola picked Kevin de Bruyne (right) and Ilkay Gundogan at Arsenal despite recent injuries

'We now have four games in a row in the Premier League. We know what we want to do. We want to make a big step.'

Manchester City took the lead after just 79 seconds as Riyad Mahrez crossed for Sterling who peeled off Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin to head home.

The visitors dominated the opening 15 minutes of the match and while they allowed Arsenal to grow into the game, the league leaders managed to keep the Gunners at arms length to maintain their 10-point lead at the top of the Premier League.

Guardiola says Gundogan 'should be ready' for Arsenal clash on Sunday

  Guardiola says Gundogan 'should be ready' for Arsenal clash on Sunday Gundogan, who has scored four goals in his last two league games against Tottenham and Liverpool, missed the 3-1 win at Goodison Park on Wednesday night with a slight groin injury. City boss Guardiola revealed that the German's absence from Wednesday's matchday squad was precautionary and he looks set to return at the Emirates Stadium this weekend.

Instead of pushing for another goal towards the end, City opted to sit deep and let Arsenal come forwards - a tactic which Guardiola praised due to Arsenal's strength under former City assistant Arteta.

a person standing in front of a crowd: Guardiola claims his side are drained after a tough workout from Mikel Arteta's Arsenal (right) © Provided by Daily Mail Guardiola claims his side are drained after a tough workout from Mikel Arteta's Arsenal (right)

Guardiola added: 'The last 10-15 minutes was brilliant. We didn't push the action, the action came through the passes and movements in the right tempo.

'At half-time we adjusted our pressing and won a lot of balls. In the first half we could not. The second half was better. We didn't create chances but enough to win the game.

'Mikel knows everything. He's so good. It's not because he's my friend. He's so clever. I learn a lot watching his teams. Today I learned something that I can use in the future. He knows everything about football.'

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Manchester City won seven out of seven in all competitions without Kevin De Bruyne before their star midfielder's midweek return.De Bruyne, the reigning PFA Players' Player of the Year, made his return from a hamstring injury as a second-half substitute during City's 3-1 win over Everton in midweek – a result that increased their lead at the top of the Premier League to 10 points.

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