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.
— EFL (@EFL) October 25, 2017
“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.
If you get paid over £100,000 A WEEK to kick a ball about, you should be able to kick any ball about, Pep, you maniac.
— James Davies (@Bobgotbored) October 25, 2017
If Jose blamed the ball for a poor performance media would crucify him but as Pep is a football genius it must be the balls fault #excuses
— Cantona & Best (@bestcanton7) October 25, 2017
Pep blaming the ball for not scoring is hilarious. What an excuse.
— Football Man (@FootballMan1992) October 25, 2017
Pep Guardiola talking absolute rubbish about the ball last night. "Impossible to score". Suppose that's why every game finished 0-0.
— Steve Kenyon (@SteKenyon) October 25, 2017
— John Bills (@BillsJohnW) October 25, 2017
Wonder how much Messrs Guardiola and Toure were paid by Adidas and Nike to lay into the Mitre match ball? Grow up, whining prima donnas
— James Bland (@james_e_bland) October 25, 2017
— Versus Sport (@VersusSportMag) October 25, 2017