It was a disappointing afternoon to say the least for Pep Guardiola and Manchester City.
The Citizens missed the chance to move 18 points clear of Manchester United at the top of the Premier League following a 1-1 draw with Burnley.
City took the lead in the first-half through a sensational Danilo strike from distance, but their defence was breached late on as Johann Berg Gudmundsson levelled for the Clarets.
It’s only the fourth game this term that Guardiola’s men have failed to win, and he will be hugely dissatisfied that they were undone by a long cross into the box.
However, they should’ve been out of sight when Raheem Sterling somehow managed to miss an open goal from only a few yards out.
He was subsequently substituted by the former Barcelona and Bayern boss, and his move is unlikely to have been improved by what then followed.
But one of the biggest talking points was over Guardiola’s selection, or rather lack of it.
It’s been well-documented that City have had some injury problems of late, with David Silva and John Stones missing out today.
They joined Benjamin Mendy, Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus, Fabian Delph and Phil Foden on the sidelines, all of whom have longer-term problems.
Consequently, Guardiola named only six subsititutes out of a possible seven, leaving them short-staffed when they needed a goal late in the game.
Claudio Bravo, Aymeric Laporte, Tosin Adarabioyo, Oleks Zinchenko, Yaya Toure and Brahim Diaz were those named on the bench, with only Diaz and Zinchenko offering any natural attacking threat, though the latter has been deployed at left-back.
According to the Manchester Evening News, the real reason Guardiola only named six of the seven permitted was because he didn’t want to rob a development squad player of game time last night.
City’s EDS had a game against Swansea last night, and Guardiola elected rather sensibly to allow them to play, rather than deprive them of game time to travel to Burnley just to sit on the bench.
If anything, it shows good management of the club, as opposed to thinking solely about his needs for the first-team.
That should be the end of that controversy, then.