Why Eurovision forced Man City’s Everton game to be postponed as Real Madrid get more rest ahead of Champions League clash
The Eurovision Song Contest is due to be held in Liverpool this weekend, but it had a direct impact on Manchester City’s game against Everton.
The Citizens are still in search of the hat-trick that would equal Manchester United’s achievements in 1999, but the timing is giving them trouble.
And if the fixture list wasn’t complicated enough, an iconic event is now set to cause more problems for City, with the second leg of their semi-final against Real Madrid on the horizon.
Why Eurovision impacted Man City’s match against Everton?
UEFA initially wanted the first leg between Real and City to take place on May 10 and the second leg on May 16.
That would have meant rescheduling City’s clash with the Toffees until Saturday May 13 to fill the 5.30pm slot.
However, Merseyside Police refused to sanction the move due to the Eurovision Song Contest being held in Liverpool that day.
It was considered too complicated for a football match and Eurovision to take place in the same city on the same day, as resources would have been strained.
As a result, UEFA reversed the semi-finals, meaning City’s Premier League game against Leeds was postponed instead.
Merseyside Police’s refusal to move Everton’s tie means there is no 5.30pm kick-off in the top flight this Saturday.
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Pep Guardiola highlighted the schedule change and Eurovision’s role in his pre-match press conference ahead of the Everton clash.
He said, “I can’t understand it, but I’m not going to fight it anymore.
“I don’t understand, but we have to adapt. The calendar is what it is. It’s not frustrating. It is what it is, how many times can I comment on this?
“I’m sure the Premier League wants to help the teams, they don’t want to make us feel uncomfortable.
“The problem is the calendar, this number of competitions, this number of matches.
“I think we can’t play on Saturday because there’s Eurovision and we don’t have enough body or the capacity to handle so many people.”
Carlo Ancelotti’s Real, meanwhile, play Getafe at home on Saturday, meaning they’ll have a bit more time to prepare for the trip to the Etihad.
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