Pep Guardiola's rant at Premier League rivals over Man City's Covid cases

Man City saw 21 positive Covid cases last weekend but Premier League rivals have branded them lucky – with Pep Guardiola’s men boasting a 10 point lead ahead of Saturday’s clash with Chelsea

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Pep Guardiola previews Chelsea test

Pep Guardiola has hit back at Manchester City’s rivals for claiming they have been lucky when it comes to Covid cases.

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel and Liverpool defender Virgil van Djik suggested City’s 10-point lead at the top of the Premier League is because they have had fewer cases than their rivals.

But ahead of City’s Saturday lunchtime showdown with Chelsea today, Guardiola said the likes of Tuchel and van Djik were wrong – and pointed to his side’s number of positive Covid cases to back up his point.

City recorded 21 positive cases – including seven players – ahead of last weekend’s FA Cup tie at Swindon, with Guardiola also forced to isolate and miss the 4-1 win.

Man City had 21 positive Covid cases last weekend


James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images))

Champions City have lost more players to the virus in the build-up to today’s encounter, with Guardiola having overseen just one training session this week, since returning from isolation.

Against that backdrop, Guardiola reckons City have suffered as much as their rivals in terms of the impact of the Covid pandemic.

“We have some new Covid cases,” said Guardiola.

“Covid is all around the world and it’s not that in this part of the world there is no Covid. That’s not true.

Pep Guardiola was not happy in his press conference


Getty Images)

“Are you saying that we’re the smartest? That Omicron doesn’t come to visit us?

“We had a lot of cases and injuries. We played at Aston Villa with 11 first-team players. We played, we didn’t postpone it.

“The last five games, we played with academy players on the bench. We’re in the same situation as all the other clubs.

“We try to play. If we have 11 or 12 players, it’s enough. We have Cole Palmer, James McAtee and other players we try to play. We have enough players.

“We had a lot of players and backroom staff with Covid and, at the beginning of the season, we had a lot of tough injuries with our players.

“So what can I say? If they believe we were lucky, okay we were lucky! Thank-you. What can I say?

“The pandemic is all around the world and everywhere there is the virus.

“We’re exposed every single minute and day to getting it. We’re no exception.

“If they believe it’s the reason why [City are so far ahead] then maybe, maybe. Sometimes it’s the money we have, sometimes it’s Covid. I don’t know.”

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By Malvi