Last night saw Manchester City somehow scrape past Schalke in their round of 16 first leg clash in Germany. The Citizens were saved at the death by goals from Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling, but when they were 2-1 down to a Nabil Bentaleb double and saw Nicolas Otamendi sent off for a second yellow card things were looking bleak.
RED CARD | Otamendi receives his second yellow of the game and is sent off.
We’re down to ten.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) 20 February 2019
At the time of Nicolas Otamendi’s dismissal, a lot of the fans were starting to turn on Pep Guardiola. The Spaniard very rarely gets it wrong when he’s setting up his side, although the fans were more than happy to stick the knife in when they saw that Otamendi had been shown a red card, as they’d never have started the 31-year-old Argentine from the get-go in such a big game.
Otamendi has appeared in the Champions League four times this season and was even given the captain’s armband by Guardiola in the club’s final group stage game, a 2-1 home win against Hoffenheim. However, this season has seen Otamendi drop down the pecking order at the club, with John Stones and Aymeric Laporte the two first-choice options for Guardiola, so to see him mix things up and use his unreliable Argentine was a shock to the fans.
You can read the Citizens’ thoughts on Otamendi’s dismissal here:
Pep outclassed yet again. Get him out of our club!
— Fuego (@Fuego88649356) February 20, 2019
Terrible moment for Pep
— Josephs_lub (@Josephs01742153) February 20, 2019
Pep should start being serious
— akankunda garasiano (@akankundaga) February 20, 2019
I'm starting to think pep's brain goes on a shut down when we are losing
— frank (@Thebe01) February 20, 2019
Wouldn’t trade Pep for just about anyone but it’s decisions like starting Otamendi in a champions league match that makes me seriously question what he’s thinking
— Andrew Gentilucci (@alucci21) February 20, 2019
Pep is the problem in this match for crying out loud what is Sané doing on the bench this match is sold
— adekola oluwatobi (@tgc4real) February 20, 2019
Both pep and otamendi are just fools
— ZAEEM (@Zhaeem) 20 February 2019
The Citizens were far from happy with Guardiola as his side limped over the line yesterday and will be keen for swift improvements when they meet Schalke at The Etihad.