EFL, fans accuse Guardiola of talking ‘balls’

The EFL has defended the type of ball used in the Carabao Cup after Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola criticised it following his team’s penalty victory over Wolves on Tuesday.

Speaking after the Premier League leaders needed penalties to defeat Championship leaders Wolves, Guardiola said the Mitre branded ball was “impossible” to score with.

In a statement, the EFL said: “The entertainment provided across last night’s ties would suggest that the ball is not having a negative impact.”

Guardiola’s comments came after Sergio Aguero missed several chances during the match, although he did manage to net City’s final penalty in their 4-1 shootout win.

“If we played with a different ball he would break the record,” said Guardiola. “To score with that ball is a miracle.

“It’s not Nike, Adidas I don’t know, it’s a different brand. It’s unacceptable to play with the ball.”

The Premier League uses Nike balls, while Adidas balls are used in Champions League matches.

“It is not a serious ball for a professional game,” said Guardiola. “I can say that after we win. If we don’t win and I say that it is an excuse.

“We get one day or two days [to use it in training] but if a ball is bad it is bad two days, one week, one month, one year, two years. If it is bad, it is bad.”

The EFL statement added: “The Mitre ball used in this season’s Carabao Cup is of exactly the same technical specification as the balls used in the Sky Bet EFL and Checkatrade Trophy, all of which are tested in accordance with the FIFA Quality Programme for Footballs and meet the FIFA Quality Pro standard.

“All balls used in the professional game are required to meet this standard.

“We will look to engage with Mr Guardiola and Manchester City to fully understand any concerns in advance of their round five tie.”

Meanwhile, fans had a field day with Guardiola’s comments.