Manchester City duo Jack Grealish and Phil Foden have been warned about their conduct by manager Pep Guardiola, according to reports.
Both players were on the bench for Manchester City’s 4-0 win over Newcastle on Sunday at St James’ Park.
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Asked why he made changes to his starting XI for the Newcastle game, Guardiola replied: “It was not rotation, no. I decided on this team because they deserved to play today, these guys and not the other ones. At Christmas time I pay a lot of attention to behaviour on and off the pitch. And when off the pitch is not proper, they are not going to play.
So we have to be focused all the time because of distractions at Christmas time and everything that happens – you have to still be focused.
In a separate interview after the victory which saw City move three points clear at the top of the Premier League table, Guardiola repeated his team selection was not to rotate but based on tactical decisions and the behaviour of his players.
“I didn’t rotate today,” he said.
“If the players believe I rotated for that game they are mistaken. I decide the best team today for the way they play. We needed a different pace for the players and that’s why they play.
“I don’t know if we are going to play Leicester [on Boxing Day], unfortunately they have a lot of [Covid] cases, hopefully they are getting better. It depends what we see in the training sessions and it depends what we see on and off the pitch – how the players behave in this period – and I will take a decision.”
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