Rodri: Manchester City midfielder says he needs a rest
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Rodri: Manchester City midfielder says he needs a rest

Manchester City midfielder Rodri says he is planning to take a break during the season run-in as the club chase a second successive Treble.

The 27-year-old made his 41st appearance of the campaign in Tuesday’s Champions League quarter-final first-leg draw against Real Madrid.

That was the third of eight games across three competitions the club will play in April.

“I do need a rest,” said the Spain international.

“Let’s see how we speak, how we live the situation. Sometimes it is what it is.

“I need to adjust. It [rest] is something we are planning, yes.”

The thrilling 3-3 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu made it 429 days and 66 games since Rodri lost a game playing for City in any competition.

The former Atletico Madrid midfielder has played 3,497 minutes this season – the 23rd most of any player from Europe’s top leagues in England, Spain, Germany, Italy and France.

But only three players have made more starts and two of those are goalkeepers.

Rodri has missed four domestic games through suspension this season, with City losing all four.

Pep Guardiola’s side face Luton in the Premier League on Saturday before the return leg with Real Madrid on 17 April.

They then face Chelsea in an FA Cup semi-final and have Premier League trips to Brighton and Nottingham Forest before the end of the month.

Speaking last week, Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag said players are struggling to perform at consistent levels because they are being “overloaded”, citing City’s performance in their goalless draw against Arsenal compared to their 3-1 win over the Red Devils in March.

Ten Hag said: “You see the levels dropping with them [Manchester City] again, it was a different team to when we faced them. The levels with teams will drop at any moment if we keep going in this process by overloading the international programme.”

Global players’ union Fifpro has said football needs to do more to protect against “dangerous levels of fixture congestion”.

Meanwhile, world governing body Fifa is expanding its Club World Cup competition, and Uefa is increasing the size of Europe’s Champions League from next season.

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