Clichy: old City tried to stop me being a veggie, but now overweight players are banned

Manchester City tried to stop Gael Clichy from being a vegetarian when he first joined the club – but now the new management have changed their minds on diet.
In fact since manager Pep Guardiola joined in the summer of 2016, players who are just TWO KILOS over their target weight are not even allowed to train with the first team.
Defender Clichy revealed the changes since he moved north from Arsenal in July 2011, in an exclusive video for Footballers Lives. And he said that at first he had to fight for what he believed in.
“At the beginning it was quite difficult to make the club understand,” he said. “The chef was like: ‘You don’t need to eat like this. You don’t have to go organic. You have to eat meat.’
“And I was like: ‘You say this, but I believe the other way, so either you help me to get what I want or I will just have to eat at home every day and you won’t control what I’m eating.’
“They were very worried that I would be missing some protein or some nutrient, but the way I see it is that you can get anything you need.”
But now things are much more enlightened at the club.
“In the last six years I’ve seen a massive change. The club is different. It’s a different structure. This new manager is really into the diet as well. I’ve been doing this for five-six years, and he comes in and he’s into all this diet thing. And weight is a massive issue for him. If you go two kilos over your former weight, you cannot train with the team.
“And I’m thinking to myself: ‘Wow, I’ve been doing this for six years now, and finally someone, a manager, is into what I’m thinking.
“If someone like him feels that it’s needed for a team to be fit and performing, then I’m thinking that I’ve done well for the last six years.
“He’s saying that being two or three kilos overweight is like playing every game with three kilos on your shoulder. And eventually you will get injured because your body cannot cope.
“So I’m really happy because I don’t have a weight issue. But overall I’m doing this because football is important in my life but also because I want to live old and I want to be fit when I get older.
“I’ve seen some friends having serious illness, and by diet you can treat some of those illnesses. It just makes sense to me and I believe it’s just a matter of time that everybody realises that you need to have the knowhow to eat well.”
And Clichy is trying to help educate the next generation of footballers.
“I’m trying to tell the young players that I’m 32 in July, I don’t get injured much, I’m not tired. Of course, you know, running and stamina is one of my main attributes as a player. And in fact I feel better because I used to be ill a lot during the winter with sore throat and getting cold, and since I’ve done it it’s really minimum, the amount of time I’ve been ill.”