UCL: Why We Arrived Switzerland Early Ahead Of Young Boys Clash – Guardiola

UCL: Why We Arrived Switzerland Early Ahead Of Young Boys Clash – Guardiola
  • PublishedOctober 24, 2023

Manchester City boss, Pep Guardiola has explained why the team arrived in Switzerland early for their clash against Young Boys.

Guardiola stayed that the decision was arrived to let the team get used to the artificial grass.

The Swiss side play on artificial turf at the Wankdorf Stadium and will host City in the group stage of the Champions League on Wednesday.

Artificial grass has proved controversial in football as it is thought to increase the risk of injury and many players feel the ball does not roll as well as on normal grass.

The artificial surface has prompted Guardiola to change the way his team prepares for the match. The European and English champions trained on the artificial grass in Bern on Tuesday, rather than have their last session in Manchester.

“Grass is better. Ninety-nine percent of the teams play on grass, otherwise UEFA and FIFA would decide to play on artificial grass. It’s common sense,” he told reporters. “UEFA allow games to be played here because it is in good condition… That’s why we travel in the morning, so the players feel how the ball runs right, left, backwards, forwards. That’s why we try it and the players will know it immediately.”

City defender Manuel Akanji admitted he is not happy about the field, saying: “It’s not the same. We’re not used to artificial. We go training here today and we’ll see how it feels. It’s not my favourite but we’ll see how it goes.”

City have six points from their first two Champions League matches and will hope to preserve their perfect record when they meet Young Boys.

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