You may have noticed something unusual about Man City’s bench today.
The Premier League champions league elect named just six substitutes out of a possible seven for their lunchtime kick-off against Burnley at Turf Moor.
And the reason was quite simple according to Pep Guardiola, City don’t have enough players.
Several key players were unavailable for selection, including Leroy Sane, David Silva, John Stones, Fabian Delph, Gabriel Jesus, Phil Foden and of course Benjamin Mendy.
City were still able to field an impressive starting XI but opted not to call up a youngster to the matchday squad to sit on the bench alongside Claudio Bravo, Aymeric Laporte, Tosin Adarabioyo, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Brahim Diaz and Yaya Toure.
City pride themselves on their academy and known for cherry-picking talented youngsters from all over Europe so it seems rather off-brand to not give a youngster some matchday experience.
Adarabiyo, Zinchenko and Diaz are all still in the infancy of their careers of course so it’s not like youth is being ignored entirely.
And had Foden been fit he surely would have been named on the bench.
Still, it seems rather odd for a club of City’s stature to not fill a matchday squad, especially given how much money they’ve spent on recruitment in recent times.
As you can see, there wasn’t much sympathy from fans on social media.
Gary Neville said on Sky Sports: “I think it’s a joke, I absolutely think it’s a joke.”
Oh well, they’ll just have to spend a few more hundred million in the summer…