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SportGuardiola rues Rodri absence for Wolves clash

Guardiola rues Rodri absence for Wolves clash

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says it’s “not easy” to replace key midfielder Rodri ahead of their trip to Wolves on Saturday.

The Spain international was sent off in last weekend’s win over Nottingham Forest and will be suspended when the league leaders head to Molineux.

Kalvin Phillips deputised in the midweek defeat at Newcastle in the EFL Cup and Guardiola admitted Rodri’s absence was a difficult one to overcome.

He said: “It is not easy [without him].

“Just for the amount of minutes he plays, it’s not easy. He’s out, [so] we find another quality; the skills he has we use for the benefit of the team.”

Wolves have won just one of their opening six games, but Guardiola believes they deserve more points for their endeavours.

“[I have] Incredible respect for Wolves, the quality they have,” he added. 

“The guys up front, the manager did incredible at Bournemouth. Against Brighton, the chances they miss; against Liverpool, they have chances. 

“The quality is there; hopefully, we can respond.”

City will be looking to extend their 100 per cent start, having won each of their opening six matches. 

Their record is not so dominant without Rodri, however. Since the start of the 2019-20 campaign, City have lost four of the 14 Premier League games the Spaniard has missed, winning nine and drawing one. 

The former Atletico Madrid man also leads the charts for completed passes in the division this season with 616.

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