Man City can deal with fixture pile-up, insists Pellegrini

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has said that his side can cope with a congested fixture list throughout January, writes BBC Sport, after Blackburn Rovers forced them into an FA Cup replay with a 1-1 draw on Saturday.

Alvaro Negredo put a below-par Man City in front from close range at Ewood Park on the stroke of half time, but the Championship side battled well and found their equaliser when Costel Pantilimon’s fumble fell to Rovers captain Scott Dann, who made sure that both clubs will be involved in the FA Cup fourth round draw on Sunday.

The replay will take place on January 15, which means that Man City have been forced to call off a week of warm weather training in Abu Dhabi. It adds to a January fixture list which already includes both legs of their Capital One Cup semi-final with West Ham United, Premier League encounters with Newcastle United, Cardiff City and Tottenham, as well as the FA Cup fourth round, should they win the replay.

But Pellegrini is unfazed by the pile-up. He said: “It’s not an extra problem. We have the squad to do it. We play Blackburn instead of travelling to Abu Dhabi and playing a friendly. What is better? Nobody knows.”

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