Manchester City suffered another injury blow as defender Nathan Ake had to be subbed off after just six minutes on the pitch against Spain.
The Dutch international was named in the starting line-up for Netherland’s friendly against Spain, but appeared to have pulled his right hamstring just minutes into the match.
Supporters of Manchester City have raised questions as to why an extra fixture was necessary given the tight schedule most European leagues had. Even Netherlands manager Frank De Boer commented on the scheduling of this unnecessary fixture versus Spain, adding “I don’t think this game needed to be played.”
“Money is very important but we also need to look after our players. All interested parties need to sit down and talk because the health of our players is important. We all agree about that, and decisions need to be made.”
De Boer also confirmed that Ake would also be returning back to Manchester City and would miss out on the next two Nations League games against Bosnia and Herzegovina and Poland.
The young defender meanwhile took to social media after the game adding, “Frustrating night! Hope to be back soon!”
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Several Premier League managers as well as fans have called upon the football federations to reduce the unnecessary scheduling of pointless international friendlies.
Just last week, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola had admitted that he felt there was a need to review the decision to allow for five substitutions during games in the Premier League.
“I don’t understand, I don’t know who is in charge to decide these things but I don’t know how they don’t understand when all the leagues around the world except this league have five substitutions, to protect the players, to protect the footballers, to protect the physicality of playing every three days.
“Maybe this league likes to be different. The situation is unusual, it is different. It’s not to take advantage, it’s to protect the players, today a right-back from the national team is injured for that reason and tomorrow it will be another player.
“I don’t understand what benefits, three or five, the show must go on, it’s not to play games or not play games, it’s to protect the players. The previous season finished later, it was exceptional [circumstances] and all the leagues around the world understand the situation, except here.”
Nathan Ake now joins Sergio Aguero, Fernandinho and Benjamin Mendy among the list of injured players at the club. The 25-year-old was signed by City earlier this summer on a £41 million deal from Bournemouth and has looked to be a very decent signing in his first few appearances for City so far.