Pep Guardiola worried about Man City’s ‘penalty problem’

Riyad Mahrez missed from the spot in Dortmund

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Pep Guardiola has admitted Manchester City have a penalty problem after Riyad Mahrez missed from the spot in a 0-0 draw at Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night.

Mahrez’s miss was was his third in four attempts. The Algerian also had a penalty saved in City’s previous Champions League tie earlier this month when they were held 0-0 in Copenhagen. It put City’s record under Guardiola at 25 failures from 80 penalties, a converstaion rate of 69 per cent – a poor return given the typical Premier League conversion rate is around 80 per cent.

Erling Haaland has scored twice from the spot in the Premier League this season but was not on the field when the penalty against his former club Dortmund was awarded after being substituted at half-time. Guardiola refused to be drawn on whether Haaland or Mahrez is the club’s first-choice penalty-taker.

Guardiola said: “We’ll see, we’ll see what happens now. Of course it’s a problem. We’ve missed 25 penalties, most of them in the Champions League. That’s too much. I always admire their courage, (taking) the responsibility to do it, but of course we’ve missed a lot of penalties and this is a problem.

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“We missed (one) in Copenhagen and here as well, so we have to improve otherwise these are the small margins in this competition that could make the difference.”

Guardiola revealed Haaland and Joao Cancelo, who was also substituted at half-time, had both felt unwell before the game and both had sustained minor foot injuries.

When asked later about Haaland’s injury, the manager said: “I spoke with (the medical staff) at half-time and they were a little bit concerned, but I saw him walking more or less normally. We will see.”

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