Liverpool and Man City are the forerunners for every Premier League title nowadays. The pair are constantly challenging at the top of the table, no other team compares to the football these sides can play. So often enemies, Jürgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola were in agreement this weekend as they reiterated the need for five substitutions.
Liverpool draw at Etihad
Liverpool went to the Etihad knowing that a win would send them back to the top of the table and eight points clear of Man City, though the Citizens would have a game in hand.
The first half of the game was a joy to behold, testament to the quality of the two sides.
Early on Sadio Mane won a penalty which Mo Salah duly converted, a goal which the Reds’ blistering start deserved.
Gabriel Jesus equalised after turning Trent Alexander-Arnold and firing past Alisson Becker.
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The second half was drab with both teams satisfied with a draw from such a crucial tie.
Klopp and Guardiola united
Speaking to Sky Sports after the game, Jürgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola were united on the issue of substitutions.
The pair reiterated the need for extra subs to be allowed as teams face a gruelling schedule following a shortened pre-season. Klopp said:
“All the teams have to understand why it’s so helpful. It’s not an advantage, it’s a necessity. 100 per cent.
“In all other countries it happens and here we make a bit more fun of the competition by having only three subs. That is really incredible, so we have to talk again.
“In my understanding it is a lack of leadership, it is the only big league where you have only three subs. Surprise.”
Pep Guardiola was equally adamant, adding:
“All around the world it’s five substitutions, but here we believe we are more special people
“We don’t protect the players, and that’s why it’s a disaster. In this calendar, especially. I will demand, if the people allow, we have to come back to five substitutions. If not, it’s difficult to sustain it.”
What RTK has to say
It is utterly ridiculous that five substitutions haven’t been allowed during this campaign.
It is endangering the health of players, we have seen this in the sharp uptake in injuries this season.
This weekend it was Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s turn but who knows who could be next. Players are dropping like flies due to the strains put on them by this punishing schedule, if the league had any sense they’d allow the extra subs.