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Pep Guardiola
Gender Male
Ethnic Catalan
Job Catalan Footballer
  Manchester City Manager
  Spanish Coach
Desc La Liga winner, Bundesliga winner, and Premier League winner. There aren’t many managers nowadays who can boast that record, but Pep Guardiola can. From learning from Johan Cruyff to playing a major role in the development of players like Lionel Messi, David Alaba and Raheem Sterling, Guardiola has proved it’s possible to both realise a club’s lofty ambitions while simultaneously improving a core group of players. His work has changed the managerial landscape in the modern era and his standard is the one to beat.

Affiliation

Org Spanish National Team
Club as Player Barcelona FC
Club as Coach Manchester City
  Bayern Munich
  Barcelona FC

Relationship

Father Valenti Guardiola
Assistant Coach Domenec Torrent
  Mikel Arteta
Mentor Johan Cruyff
Agent Josep Maria Orobitg

2010 04 01 Retrieve

[Arsenal survive Barca siege. Coach Pep Guardiola, with the Nou Camp’s principles coursing through his veins, disguised his disappointment at conceding a two-goal lead to declare] I am proud of my team. We won the Champions League last season but we never played like that away from home. Never

2011 05 12 Retrieve

[Barca Coach Pep Guardiola counters by defending his players. One of them is Sergio Busquets who allegedly called Marcelo Monkey] My players are an example of professionalism and honesty. Real might think we are unsporting but I think exactly the opposite. Fourteen of 20 players in the squad have grown up in this house and they all respect the values of the house. Jose Mourinho was at Barcelona for five years and he knows our values: to win, fight and earn respect by respecting your rival

2012 03 13 Retrieve

[on Michael Laudrup] The best player in the world, I can’t believe he hasn’t won the title as best player

2012 12 09 Retrieve

[His former coach Pep Guardiola said the night Messi scored five times in a Champions League game in March] We’ll never see a player like him again. He is one of a kind

2013 08 03 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on moving his office away from the Allianz Arena dressing room so that his charges can feel at ease] It’s a space for the players - it’s their area. In the dressing room they joke around, they are allowed to talk about anything without fear that I’m breathing down their necks. They can also speak badly about me

2013 09 29 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Neuer] Neuer is one of the best goalkeepers in history

2013 11 Retrieve

[After beating rivals Borussia Dortmund, the Spaniard was even more effusive and said] If we win anything this season, it will be thanks to that decision to move Philipp Lahm. All the other pieces fell into place the moment we put him in central midfield

2013 11 05 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Paul Scholes] Out of everyone at Manchester United, I would pick out Scholes - he is the best midfielder of his generation. I would have loved to have played alongside him

2014 01 11 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Franck Ribery] I have never seen a player with [Franck] Ribery’s character at this level. The way he keeps fighting and running for the team is incredible. It’s an honour for me to coach Franck

2014 03 22 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on his wife] My wife Cristina often complains about my tactics. She keeps on telling me that I should stick with the players who won the last match. Explaining my rotation system to her is much harder than telling Arjen Robben that he will have to settle for a place on the bench!

2014 07 12 Retrieve

[Bayern captain had a game against Hertha Berlin with a 100% accurate pass rate] It is just impossible to play better than Philipp Lahm has in that position [No 6] over the last couple of games

2014 09 27 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola] We’re top but that doesn’t matter to me. What matters is the way we play

2014 10 18 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Tiki Taka] I loathe all that passing for the sake of it, all that tiki-taka. It’s so much rubbish and has no purpose. You have to pass the ball with a clear intention, with the aim of making it into the opposition’s goal. You need to dig into your own DNA. I hate tiki-taka. Barça didn’t do tiki-taka. In all team sports, the secret is to overload one side of the pitch so that the opponent must tilt its own defence to cope. You overload on one side and draw them in so that they leave the other side weak. And then you attack and score from the other side. That’s why you have to pass the ball, but only if you’re doing it with a clear intention. It’s only to overload the opponent, to draw them in and then to hit them with the sucker-punch. That’s what our game needs to be about. Nothing to do with tiki-taka

2014 11 29 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Lionel Messi breaking La Liga’s scoring record] He has broken a record that everyone thought was unbreakable - and one which has stood for 60 years. What he has achieved is astounding. It will take another 600 years before his record is broken

2015 02 21 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola offers a frank assessment of Xabi Alonso’s strengths and weaknesses] We want to keep the ball with us for as long as we can, so that’s why I want players like Xabi and Thiago [Alcantara]. But when it comes to running after another player, Xabi Alonso is the worst player in the world!

2015 05 02 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola responds to the Borussia Dortmund’s players remarks about Bayern Munich’s penalty-taking] My advice for Sebastian Kehl is: if you have a 35-point deficit in the league, it is better to shut up

2015 07 13 Retrieve

[Guardiola said after his long talk with Bastian Schweinsteiger] I told him, ‘do what you want. Do whatever is going to make you happy’

2015 12 30 Retrieve

[on Sir Alex Ferguson] This club was the best club in England thanks to him. He re-organised the club and put the club on another level in this country. I am pretty sure Alex Ferguson was the most important person in this club’s history, at least in the last half-century

2016 03 09 Retrieve

[on Francesco Totti] [. . .] when I played for Roma I sat on the bench and Totti was on the field. And it’s still the same! Anyone still playing at the age of 38 has a great passion for this sport. That’s phenomenal. Normally at the age of 38, a professional player has earned enough money and quits. Totti still plays and that’s because he loves this game

2016 03 25 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola, in Cruyff’s legacy is infinite, we will never forget him] As a player and as a manager he [Cruyff] won a lot of titles, but that’s not his legacy. The titles only help. Johan has changed two clubs. Not only did he change Ajax, but also Barcelona - and then the Dutch and Spanish national teams, too. Forget the titles. I’ve won more titles than him. Messi, for example, is someone runs less and in that he’s the best of Cruyff’s alumni. (…) I would not have been capable of doing what he did at Barcelona. He changed everything. He did it all. What Cruyff’s done for football cannot be compared. The statue thing is superficial. He has made us love this sport so openly that there’s no way we can forget him

2016 03 26 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola reflects on the life, legacy and impact of Johan Cruy] Forget about the titles, I won more titles than him. Our gratitude is infinite and his legacy is also. And this legacy is not measured in trophies. It is rather the fact that he has enforced changes … there is nothing that can compare to what Cruyff has done for football. The football of the last 25 years at Barcelona belongs to him and that is something indestructible … I knew nothing about football and Johan gave me everything

2016 07 09 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola era got under way at Manchester City] First I must meet my players. I know them from TV but I must speak with them, hug them and kick their asses. I have an idea but I need time. As a player, one of my dreams was to play here. That was not possible but now my dream has come true as a coach. The atmosphere is wow. I have also come to learn. I am curious to learn about England

2016 08 25 Retrieve

[Manchester City confirm signing of Claudio Bravo for £13.75m] Claudio is a fantastic goalkeeper and an excellent addition to our squad. He has experience and great leadership qualities and is in the prime of his life. He is a goalkeeper I have admired for a number of years and I’m really happy he is now a City player

2016 10 08 Retrieve

[Guardiola on his mentor Johan Cruyff when promoting his autobiography book] I knew nothing about football before knowing Cruyff. I thought I knew about football - but then I started to work with him and a new world opened up in front of me

2016 10 29 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says he wants Sergio Aguero to stay with the club for a long time] I am so happy with Sergio and hopefully he can stay for a long time. He is a special player, a striker who has scored millions of goals in his career. We cannot forget how many goals he scores for us. I am here to help him

2017 02 04 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola gives his take on Gabriel Jesus after the Brazilian scored his first goal for the club] You never know. It’s like a watermelon. You have to open to see if it’s good or not

2017 02 08 Retrieve

Have you seen how smart Philipp [Lahm] is? How the guy turns and protects possession and also splits the opposition?

2017 02 14 Retrieve

[Guardiola was asked at his post-match press conference about what he had told Harry Arter] He will be a father soon so I said big congratulations to him and his partner because I know what happened in the past, and, hopefully, the baby will be well

2017 03 18 Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is relishing the chance to prove his worth as a coach at his current club] It’s the first time in my career as a manager when I feel that now is the moment you have to see yourself like a manager. That’s the first time. For the other ones, I was so lucky managing and training big clubs. Now is the first time I want to help the team, so people say: ‘Wow, Pep could do that again at a team in England and at Manchester City’. I love this club and want to be here for a long long time. I want to try to do it’

2017 04 08 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola praises Antonio Conte before City’s 2-1 defeat by Chelsea] My opinion about my colleague Antonio Conte is that he’s superb, maybe he’s the best. How he was able to make Italy play beautiful football, Juventus too, in a culture where it’s so defensive. He’s an excellent manager. I learn a lot when I see his teams - Juventus, Italy and now. Their teams control a lot of aspects. It’s a good lesson for me to see his teams and learn

2017 04 29 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola thinks he is a better manager, despite not winning any trophies with the club in his first season at the helm] I am not a worse manager because I didn’t win the title. I feel as though I’m a better manager than before because I learned a lot and am more experienced

2017 08 19 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola talks about the most memorable moment in the English Premier League’s 25-year history] We will try altogether in the Premier League to close that gap against the Spanish teams and be closer in the future. But 25 years … there’s been a lot of times from Manchester United and Chelsea, but of course the Sergio Aguero moment is the most significant moment from the Premier League in the last 25 years

2017 09 27 Retrieve

[After the win over Donetsk] Our first impression [is he] will be a little bit long, out of the picture, unfortunately for us. I don’t know, we will wait until Thursday, but I am pretty sure it will be longer than we would like, unfortunately

[Of Delph’s display against Donetsk Guardiola] I have a theory - midfield players, when they are intelligent, can play everywhere because they understand the global situation

He played an amazing game. I am so happy for him. Last season he was injured a lot of the time and when he was fit maybe I didn’t count too much on him. That was my personal regret. He deserved more minutes

2017 09 30 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola playfully reminds Gary Lineker of his days as a ball boy at Barcelona when the former England striker was a player at the Nou Camp] In your period I was a ball boy and I gave you balls to play in there. I always asked you for the shirt after the game and you never gave me. Never! I cannot forgive you for that

2017 10 21 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola compares Kevin de Bruyne and former player Lionel Messi] The best is just one. If you want Kevin de Bruyne to be considered one of the best, he has to win titles. We are here to help him achieve that. But he is one of the best. It would be a dream for me, I would love all the players - not just Kevin - to achieve the level of Messi

2017 12 16 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola speaks about the qualities of midfielder David Silva] David is hugely competitive, everyone knows his skills, there is no doubt – a blind guy is able to see that – but you cannot imagine how competitive he is. He is a stylish guy, but he is an animal, always wanting to win games

2018 07 28 Retrieve

[Ex-Barcelona jewel Eric Garcia lighting up Man City’s pre-season] Eric Garcia is 17 or 18 and played like he is 24 or 25. John [Stones] has a specific quality to squeeze our game. His reading is so good, to be high, to read the intentions of the opponents. The first step, the first pass, John is better than the other ones

2018 08 04 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola speaks about the club extending striker Gabriel Jesus’s contract] I think the strategy from the club is perfect. We cannot allow Gabriel to go out for another club because he is so young. His heart, his courage, his fight to put in every effort for the team is incredible. I never met one striker who fights like he does for the team. He always wants to know what he can do better and that is fantastic

2018 08 18 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola speaks about left-back Benjamin Mendy following his side’s 2-0 victory over Arsenal] Mendy is Mendy. In the terms that it is what it is. Sometimes you want to kill him. Sometimes you say, ‘Wow, what a player we have’. He gives us this extra energy with Kyle Walker with him, that helps us, you know? When he attacks that consistency is so important. Mendy has a lot of things to improve. Hopefully we can convince him to be calm and to forget a little bit the social media and focus on what he has to do

2018 09 15 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola reveals he wants to end his coaching career where it began] I will finish where I started; my final steps will be with youth teams. Hopefully, it will be Barça’s

2018 09 25 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola explains why he wanted to bring Thiago Alcantara to Bayern Munich] Thiago can play in three, four or five different positions in midfield. He has so much quality, above all his mentality. He always thinks that everything is possible. He has no fear

2018 10 20 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Lionel Messi] Leo is a competitive, fierce animal. That helps others to be competitive. He hates to lose and plays like when he was a kid. In big matches, if the team helps him, he makes the difference. Together with Cristiano [Ronaldo] we have lived and are living an era of two phenomena

2018 10 27 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola revealed how his wife and daughter were caught up in the Manchester Arena attack after attending an Ariana Grande concert on 22 May 2017] When the attack happened, I was at home with my son, and my wife and daughters were there - they were at the arena. She called me but the line broke immediately. She told me ‘something happened and we are running, but I don’t know what happened’ and the line broke. We tried to call her again and it didn’t work; we went to the arena, and after five or six minutes, she rang again and said: ‘We are out, we’re coming back home’. At the end, we were lucky. Many people suffered, and we were lucky. Life is like this. We were in a better position than many unfortunate ones

2019 04 12 Retrieve

[After their defeat to Spurs the other night, Ilkay Gundogan suggested that Manchester City were ‘too nervous’ in these big games and also ‘always make the wrong decisions’] I don’t agree with him, absolutely not. In the second half it was under control. Our game at Tottenham was much better than Schalke. Sergio reacted incredibly well to the penalty, the team was mentally strong

2019 03 23 Retrieve

[European football’s governing body announced earlier in March that its Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) is investigating the Premier League leaders, with there being the suggestion they could face a transfer ban] I am not the right guy to talk about what the club says. They [the owners] don’t call me and explain what they are doing. I am concerned about what I have to do, I cannot speak every day about this. What is going to happen is going to happen. Of course. It is good, it’s really good

2019 04 27 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola gives his take on the Premier League title race] When Usain Bolt makes a 100m race that’s the standard and the others have to achieve it. Like, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, that’s the same. 100 points in a season - if you want to compete you have to do that

2019 05 11 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola talks about Premier League competition] [The Premier League] is the toughest league I’ve ever played as a manager, for the quality of the rivals - no doubts. That’s why being there [in contention] is incredible. But of course only one will take the prize and the other one will be at home sad

[Pep Guardiola thinks The Reds keep elite company, and few would know better than their title race competition] In my career as a manager, I played against incredible sides. There are two that were ‘wow’. One is the Barcelona of Luis Enrique with Neymar, Messi and Suarez in front. The other is this Liverpool

2019 05 11b Retrieve

[Long-time Bielsa admirer Pep Guardiola said that the practice of spying on rivals is commonplace] In other countries, everybody does that. When I was training Bayern Munich there were people on a little mountain - opponents with cameras - watching what we were doing. It was cultural for the clubs, not because I said, ‘you have to go to do that’. It was part of the culture. [However] I’m not going to send anyone to spy on Huddersfield. If that is the question, forget about it

2019 05 13 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola bigs up Manchester City’s title rivals] We are fighting with the best Liverpool ever, one of the best teams I’ve seen in my life.

2019 05 23 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes Leroy Sane is still a crucial part of the team] We are one-and-a-half years trying to sign his [new] contract. We want him. If you want to extend his contract, it’s because you want him. You’re not going to extend his contract because you don’t want him.

He’s competing with Raheem Sterling and Bernardo Silva. It’s not easy. If you want to play in for competitions for the quadruple we need Leroy, Sterling, Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo, we can’t compete for the quadruple with just two wingers

2019 05 24 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has already warded off complacency at Manchester City once] Every player has to feel, ‘I have to play good or I don’t play’ if you want to be consistent after what we have done these two seasons. They have to feel, ‘I have to win again, if not I have problems, I’m in trouble, I cannot be longer here.

2019 05 26 Retrieve

[Who is Manchester City’s Young Player of the Season? Aro Muric] He’s 20 years old and he’s played all the competition. He’s a young guy who trains very well. He is so shy. He deserves the big applause. During the game was brilliant in his decisions, saving with his foot and in the penalties the keeper is decisive

2019 06 03 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Under-fire Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde is still the right man to lead the club forward] Away from the great friendship that we have, Ernesto is spectacular. He’s done a very good job. Sure he lost the Champions League, we all did. [He’s in charge of] a team that has won two leagues in a row and plays good football, I’m happy that he’s staying. Barcelona continue being loyal to his style.

[Guardiola also weighed in on Barca’s European loss to Liverpool] Barcelona and Liverpool are very good teams. Liverpool are champions of Europe, they’re very strong. When the standard is so high, if one team has a bad game, that’s when you lose

[Guardiola has no plans to go back to Catalunya, having already stamped his mark on the club as both a player and manager] I’ve already had my time as a coach, now there are new generations. It’s always about me going to the Camp Nou

2019 06 03b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City are starting from scratch next season] We have an amazing rivalry, but not only with them [Liverpool], there are five other strong teams and that’s why the Premier League is so tough. Next season we will start from scratch and we’ll see what happens.

[Barca did retain their title in La Liga, though, and Guardiola offered his backing to Valverde] Away from the great friendship that we have, Ernesto Valverde is spectacular. He’s done a very good job. Sure he lost the Champions League, we all did. [He’s in charge of] a team that has won two league [titles] in a row and plays good football, I’m happy that he’s staying. Barcelona continue being loyal to his style

2019 06 05 Retrieve

[The honour of Player of the Season was also bestowed upon Bernardo Silva, no mean feat in a team which swept all before them on the domestic front] Maybe this season he’s been [number] one or two of the best players in the Premier League. Portugal is fortunate to have him. I love him, it’s simple like that. He can do absolutely everything. He’s one of the most talented players I’ve ever seen in my career as a manager or a player

2019 06 06 Retrieve

[Eric Garcia - the teenage defender set to save Man City millions on a Kompany replacement] He has good vision, a good pass. It’s incredible, I’m very pleased. He didn’t make one mistake and with the ball, he played with huge personality

[That maturity has been evident to everybody involved in City’s youth teams over the past two years] Eric Garcia is 17 or 18 and played like he is 24 or 25. He has a lot of personality. In pre-season in the States he was incredible, commanding the line against Bayern Munich and Liverpool. He’s a guy that has a lot of sense of the position. He’s so smart, he’s not the strongest in the air or the fastest one but few times the opposition win one position, he’s able to guide the line and has a lot of personality to play

2019 06 07 Retrieve

[Guardiola became the first Premier League manager since Sir Alex Ferguson to retain the title with victories in 2017-18 and 2018-19 with City] There’s no better place to work than England. There’s no better place to do your job as a manager. I can compare with Spain and Germany, I suspect Italy would be similar. There is no better place than England. The fans always support you. I am a blue shirt - I am one of yours. The first year was difficult. When we were knocked out by Monaco in the Champions League, struggling in the Premier League. But the fans supported us. I felt that in the first season when we didn’t win one title. They supported me. I don’t forget it. It’s easy now to say how good we are. The moment when it didn’t work so well - I needed time. We all need time. But I got the support.

[Man City also lifted the Carabao Cup and FA Cup last season, sealing England’s first-ever domestic treble] [The treble] is one of the best because of where we did it. England is the toughest one. The Premier League and English football is the most difficult one. For the tough calendar and the physicality of the opponents. The weather conditions - there are four or five months when the weather is really bad. It’s so demanding. The first one is one of the nicest ones. The first with Barcelona was the nicest, and last season here was to. We knew the contenders would be better. We knew Liverpool would be there. It was a little bit more incredible this year to maintain this pace and this level. We were seven points behind. There is a tendency to drop points then. You have to have incredible focus every single day

2019 06 07b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says he accepts that Manchester City will not be considered one of the all-time great sides until they win the Champions League] Football always gives you another opportunity. People say until we win the Champions League, we can’t be considered one of the greatest. It’s OK, we accept the challenge. A decade ago, no one could have considered this club could win the Premier League. Now the people start to talk about the Champions League. That’s a first step, that’s good. If it happens next season, it will be next season. With me or without me, with this group or with another group. Maybe one day it will happen. If it doesn’t happen - unlucky. But we’ll be trying to do it.

[City had looked set to progress against Spurs late on in the quarter-final second leg, after two goals from Raheem Sterling helped turn around a 3-1 deficit] I’ve won many prizes by one inch. And we lost this one [against Tottenham] by one inch. Right now, we are the happiest group in the world. At the same time, we are conscious that doing the same we could have lost the Premier League. I’ve won a Champions League semi-final with one shot on target in the second leg. And I’ve lost one with 30 shots on target - against the same team, Chelsea. You have to work to control as much as possible

2019 06 07c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believed his Manchester City were out of the title race after they lost 2-1 to Newcastle at St. James’s Park in January] Right after the game in the locker room [we thought it was over]. We know the next day Liverpool play [against Leicester]. The fact they didn’t win meant we were still there. Still we were alive. The fact that we played most of our games after Liverpool, and the fact we knew we couldn’t drop points. Sometimes it’s easy to prepare the mental approach of the players. Everyone was convinced that the only chance we had to win to was to win every single game. Everybody knew it. Win, or we are out. And that sometimes helps. You know what you have to do. It helps.

It was a final for us not for them [against Liverpool]. If we lose it’s over. We didn’t play well, especially because the opponent was tough. But we played to still be in the title race. That game showed me. We showed incredible spirit. There are different ways to win a title. Not just one

: 2019 06 11 The prime example of the false nine, however, dates back to 2009 with Lionel Messi under the tutelage of former manager Pep Guardiola at Barcelona. Essentially, the number nine - on paper - takes up the centre-forward position, but in the game, they drop deeper in order to pull the centre-backs away from the goal. In doing so, spaces are opened up between the lines of the wingers to get closer to the goal, enabling them to score

2019 06 12 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has suggested that domestic success is a priority for Manchester City over the Champions League] The league is always the most important championship. It makes you happier because as you win a lot, on Sunday, Monday or Tuesday, you are happy. When you lose in the Champions League, you are fked for two days. When you go badly in the league you are fked many more days.

We all want to win the Champions League, it is a trophy that is decided at the end of the season and it is very prestigious. We all want to win but there is only one. At City we have been trying for five or six years and we will continue trying

[Guardiola hinted Eden Hazard will thrive in La Liga] Hazard is very good, one of the best players I’ve seen. Spanish football is going to have a lot of fun with Eden Hazard.

2019 06 12b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola rubbished talk of a reported sabbatical, insisting that he does not plan to walk away from Manchester City any time soon] I do not take a sabbatical. The news comes out, is repeated and is not checked. I have two years of contract and, if they do not kick me out, I will continue.

: 2019 06 13 Manchester City are aiming to secure an incredible third successive Premier League title after narrowly beating Liverpool to the top spot by one point last season

2019 06 26 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola feels that Atletico Madrid midfielder Rodri is a great player] I’ve no idea [if Rodri is going to City], you’ll see. He’s a great player. There is no chance that City will sign him

2019 06 27 Retrieve

[Barcelona have been backed in their rumoured pursuit of Neymar and Antoine Griezmann by former boss Pep Guardiola] It all depends on the idea you have in mind with the sporting director and the coach. The good [players] are always welcome in any team. Those two are very good.

[Guardiola coached Neymar during his time at Barcelona] I’m not going to say anything, it does not belong to me. This belongs to Barcelona. ​​I’ve lived in this club for a long time and I do not want any opinion to be misinterpreted

[Guardiola has no intention of returning in a boardroom position] I will return to Barcelona sooner or later. But as president, forget about it. To be president, you have to know [what you’re doing] and be prepared; to have knowledge that I don’t have. I’m trying to be a good coach; that hasn’t gone too badly in this decade. I will return to Barcelona to live, sooner or later.

2019 06 30 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says he doubts whether Neymar would be the same player he was during his time at Barcelona if he opts to switch back to Camp Nou from Paris Saint-Germain this summer] Neymar is an extraordinary player. But I don’t know. It’s like if I go back to Barcelona, I am not the same person, and I don’t know if Neymar would be the same. Well, he is great, nobody doubts it.

[Guardiola thinks his former employers already boast the talent to keep Messi satisfied with his surroundings] I think they are there, the right players. They have always been there. I recently said that the two toughest rivals I have encountered in my career are Liverpool this year and Luis Enrique’s Barca. The Champions League is very demanding… the defensive involvement in Europe is very large. That is one of the reasons I played Leo through the middle. I didn’t want Leo to experience the physical wear and tear, so he could express his talent in the last 20 metres of the pitch. But at the Camp Nou against Liverpool he ran like a beast. If they had reached the Champions League final, they would have won

2019 06 30b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says he will not leave the ‘beautiful’ Premier League to return to former clubs Barcelona or Bayern Munich as the conditions for managing at Manchester City are too good] What I like more is that I have proved that people who said we can’t play the same way in Germany or in the Premier League were wrong. With Silva, Bernardo Silva, Sterling or Aguero, all of them less than one metre 20! We have done it. We don’t concede many goals and we dominate positionally. We have the same ideas that we had when we trained the Barca youth team in the third division.

I have everything here [at City], sincerely, everything I need. Working at home [in Spain], it is hard because the emotions are so intense and the press conferences harder. Here, in Manchester, I have Txiki (Begiristain, City’s director of football]</b>, who is the most important person of my career because he trusted me when I was no one. I have Ferran Soriano [City’s CEO] also, and you sometimes ask yourself, ‘how can he be that cold?’ But, at the same time, he manages with a brutal precision. When I win I am good, when I lose I am bad. That is the same everywhere, but in this club we are three or four people deciding in the sporting area, there isn’t the noise of 18 board members

I have everything I desire to do my job. I won’t go back to Barcelona or Germany. Where can I have facilities that good to play in such a beautiful league like the Premier League?

2019 06 30c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola expressed his disagreement with the idea of a breakaway competition for Europe’s top clubs] If it happens we’ll kill the leagues. If Barca and Real Madrid go and they do not play against Espanyol, who will follow the league? The Spanish league will die. In England they are very intelligent, the grounds of the fourth division are full. England will not let this essence of local football die.

[Man City have been knocked out in the round of 16 once and the quarter-finals twice under Guardiola] Part of the greatness of the Champions League is that it is not every Sunday. If games were every week it would lose its charm. Barcelona v Espanyol is very necessary for the city. And the more Catalan teams in La Liga, the better. If we kill the domestic leagues, nobody will be interested in watching teams that do not have the chance to go to the European league

2019 07 17 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola suggested that comparisons between Rodri and Barcelona great Sergio Busquets may not be wide of the mark] He is a young, typical defensive midfielder who thinks very quickly. I hope he is here for a long time. Rodrigo is tall, which for a short side like ours is very good. He is great at set-pieces but we didn’t buy him for that

[Pep hopes to continue that youth-oriented recruitment policy and also sees great things in his new midfield lynchpin] Ever since we arrived here we have tried to buy players who are 21, 22 or 23 years old. [Rodri] is a Spain national team player and there they call him ‘the next Busquets’. I think he is a very good player

2019 07 17b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is aiming to convince Leroy Sane to stay at Manchester City amid interest from Bayern Munich] I have said many times that we want people to be happy here and we want to help Leroy to reach his potential. He’s a great player with incredible quality

[Kompany has returned to his former club Anderlecht in a player-manager role, leaving City without a club captain] We will choose the captain. We will wait until everyone is back and they will choose their captain.

2019 07 19 Retrieve

[Kevin De Bruyne would gladly accept the opportunity to fill Vincent Kompany’s boots at Manchester City and become the club’s new captain. Pep Guardiola revealing that a decision will be made by his] They will choose the captain when we are all together. After they are all back, they are going to make a meeting and decide who is going to be captain

2019 07 19b Retrieve

[Manchester United have been handed a major boost in their pursuit of Leicester’s Harry Maguire, with Pep Guardiola playing down Manchester City’s chances of signing another centre back] We are so happy with the squad we have. I don’t know if the players here will stay or if new players will come, but I am delighted with the players we have. There’s a chance [of a defender coming in] but I don’t know if it will be possible. We [already] have three incredible central defenders and Fernandinho can play in that position

[Guardiola has hinted at his dissatisfaction with his former club’s public pursuit, and outlined his desire to keep Leroy Sane in the Premier League] For a long time they talk about their interest, but Leroy is our player and hopefully he can stay next season and next season and next season

[Pushed on if he had spoken to anyone at Bayern, Guardiola replied] No

2019 07 20 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is hopeful last season’s treble winners can add another centre back before the new season starts] We want Leroy Sane to stay. Hopefully he can stay this season and another one and another one, that’s why we offered him a new contract. I want him. He has special qualities, we play wingers and we need specific wingers. But it is his decision, it’s the same as what happened with Jadon Sancho. We want him, we are giving everything, but in the end, if he doesn’t want, what can you do? Nothing

[City has been linked with Leicester City’s Harry Maguire. When asked if City needed to replace Vincent Kompany] We will see. But yeah, we are looking for some names. At the same time, we have three centre-backs who can play there and we have two young players in the second team who can help us. We shall see if the market is possible and if the club believes we can spend that money. But if they don’t, we shan’t spend it.

: 2019 07 20b Manchester City failed to collect their first trophy of the 2019-20 season after losing the Premier League Asia Trophy final to Wolves on penalties. Following a goalless draw in Shanghai on Saturday, Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio saved three penalties to seal a 3-2 shoot-out victory for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side

2019 07 20c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola admits Manchester City are stronger with Kevin De Bruyne] He’s been top. Unfortunately last season we missed him a lot. We did incredibly well without him but we are stronger with him. Last season he didn’t have holiday but he has had more time to rest and he came back like he did two seasons ago. Hopefully he can keep his level. He’s incredibly positive in his mind and his quality speaks for itself. He made an incredible first half, really good. He’s a guy who likes to play football. He’s a huge competitor. What we want now is to be calm and not get injuries. Today was another game and we finished without that. Especially what happens last season with him with a lot of injuries, be calm step by step. He never lost his confidence as a player even with what happened last season but for the physical condition - don’t get injured. That is the most important thing, the rest we know his quality especially when he is positive in his mind. He is incredible as a player so I’m not going to discover his quality

[French defender Aymeric Laporte admitted his City side that enjoyed domestic dominance last season have much to work on] I think it’s pre-season we have to keep working to be ready for the season in the final two [friendlies] and that’s most important. We make a good jump but the result wasn’t good, so we have to improve. Football is sometimes like today and we have to improve for next time. I don’t know, the goalkeeper did a good job. I think, the first-half it was good we were better than them but we didn’t score and the most important is to score. We missed a penalty obviously it could be better for us but it’s okay. It’s pre-season we have to improve and keep working

2019 07 20d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola will place little significance on Manchester City’s Premier League Asia Trophy final defeat to Wolves on penalties] Sometimes it is good to lose against the Premier League teams in that period [pre-season] but honestly I don’t think so. If we are going to lose in the future it will not be because today we lost on penalties in this competition. That is my feeling but everything can happen in sport

[Kevin De Bruyne shone during the opening 45 minutes and Guardiola hailed his team’s display in Shanghai despite their failure to score] They played incredibly well in the first half. Wolves defended so well and deep with a low block. It’s not easy to create chances and we created and we didn’t concede one counter-attack in that first half and the second first 15 minutes. Everybody, not just the young players, made a good performance. We [can] learn from that. We realise how difficult everything is and we are satisfied, especially with the way we played

[Injuries restricted De Bruyne to 11 Premier League starts last term] Unfortunately last season we missed him a lot. We did incredibly well without him but we are stronger with him. Hopefully he can reach his level. He is very positive in his mind. He made an incredible first half, really good. He’s a guy who likes to play football - a huge competitor. He never loses confidence in himself

2019 07 21 Retrieve

[Guardiola suggested this week that there had been no approach from his former side on Leroy Sane] For a long time [Bayern] talk about their interest but Leroy Sane is our player and hopefully he can stay next season and next season and next season

[While Guardiola has said repeatedly that he hopes Sane stays in England, he implied this week that the player would be allowed to leave if he wants] It is his decision, it’s the same as what happened with Jadon Sancho. We want him, we are giving everything, but in the end, if he doesn’t want, what can you do? Nothing

2019 07 23 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City’s players should not return to pre-season training until they are totally ready due to the crazy scheduling of modern football] Some of them will come on the 29th or 30th; the others will come in three or four weeks. They decide to come back between three or four weeks. I don’t want them to come back when they’re not fit or tired or mentally not recovered from an incredibly tough season. We cannot forget we started a new season while Riyad Mahrez had not finished the last one. It’s a crazy schedule and it is going to kill our players! We cannot sustain that for a long time. They have to breathe and rest and give more quality in the tournaments. They have to rest

[Despite the strain, some squad members have been eager to get back into training earlier than scheduled, and Guardiola joked that this was because they were simply so keen to see him] Some people want to come back a little bit earlier because they want to come back and they are more than welcome. I like it! The manager creates incredible training sessions! That’s why they want to come back earlier! They know to come back because the standard rises every season. They know that if they want to play, they will have to be fit. If not, another team-mate is going to play

2019 07 23b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has refuted at a false report from China’s state-run media service which accused Manchester City of only visiting the country for financial gain] I should say I don’t agree and also that it’s false. To make a statement like this, they have to know exactly what happened here in our club. We had an incredible time in Shanghai. We were committed to the co-operation you have to do here in China. The people from the hotel, all the people asking us to do things - we were ready to do that. That’s why I can’t understand what people are saying. Maybe one journalist is a bit upset, I don’t know why, but it’s far away from the reality

[City’s original itinerary involved two additional days in China which were lost to delays flying out of Manchester] For our club it’s a huge experience to go abroad to other countries because we are not Manchester United, Liverpool, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich. They’ve been doing it for many years. For us it’s a new experience every season, it will help on the pitch and we did it last season. And off the pitch we are showing what an amazing club we are and how we are trying to be better every season. I’m so proud of what we’ve done. All the marketing departments, all the people who’ve organised this tour. And maybe next year or in two years we are going to come back to China when the club decides we should come

2019 07 24 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has reiterated his desire to see Leroy Sane remain at Manchester City amid interest from Bayern Munich] He had a good game, especially in the second half. He is a guy we appreciate, I like him a lot. I think he can be better. Two times, three times I have said that we want him to stay. That’s why he has an offer to extend his contract. It’s not in our hands. The agreement is good and if he wants to leave, I’ll be sad. Hopefully, he stays

2019 07 26 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has hinted that Manchester City could dip back into the transfer market. Asked for an update on his recruitment plans and whether he expects to get more bodies in] No, not many. I like the faces that we have. Maybe but the transfer market is so difficult and the team is good enough. Maybe zero, maybe one, maybe one and a half

[Guardiola is in no rush despite having been heavily linked with Leicester centre-half Harry Maguire] If we believe we can, if not we will survive without a new central defender.

[Bayern Munich remain keen on taking Germany international winger Leroy Sane back to his homeland] I love Bayern Munich. I appreciate them a lot, they gave me an incredible opportunity to work in Germany. Football is what it is. Sometimes I say things the opposite side don’t like

2019 07 26b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has worked with the likes of Lionel Messi, Xavi and Robert Lewandowski in the past, but considers Manchester City starlet Phil Foden to be the most talented player I have ever seen] I said many times in press conferences, but maybe not in front of him - he is the most talented player I have ever seen as a football player or manager. He has everything to become one of the best players, not just in England. His only problem is that sometimes his manager doesn’t put him in the starting XI. Hopefully in the future he can improve. He deserves all the minutes but he knows what team he plays for and with his competitors it isn’t easy. But he is open-minded and he works incredibly hard in every training session. He knows I appreciate him. I’m here to help him as much as possible to become what he is and I am pretty sure both of us will get it

2019 07 27 Retrieve

[Manchester City are another of those to have been linked with Alves, with Pep Guardiola having previously worked with the iconic defender at Barcelona] All the important clubs in the world know his situation and the incredible player he is. He’s an extraordinary person too but now we have two incredible full backs

2019 07 27b Retrieve

[Guardiola praised De Bruyne, but reserved a special commendation for the holding midfielder, signed from Atletico Madrid in a club record £63 million deal this summer] Kevin De Bruyne made another great game. It’s important to have his quality for the vision to make the last pass when the opponent defends in a high line. But Rodri was incredible today. We knew it but today I can assure you we have an incredible holding midfielder for the next decade, or at least the years he will be here with a contract. Bernardo Silva is back too at his normal level, Sterling continued, and John Stones and Aymeric Laporte are back. These guys played incredibly well in the game today.

[Their margin of victory was just one point, and their manager said their tour of the Far East had set them up to challenge at the top of the table next season as well] I know them better so now I don’t have any doubts about what they can do. I’m not talking about winning or losing but today for example against a team second in the [J-League] table with incredible dynamic and I have no doubts that the team will be ready again to try it. The game was incredibly tough and it was an incredible test for preparing not just for Liverpool but the beginning of next season. It was perfect for us to play this kind of game because if you don’t do what you have to do they have incredible quality and they took a lot of risks. They played so quick and so good and we were in real trouble

2019 07 27c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has coached the likes of Messi, Xavi, Ribery and Robben, but Phil Foden’s talent is transcendent in the eyes of his manager] He is the most talented player I have ever seen as a football player or manager. He has everything to become one of the best players, not just in England. His only problem is that sometimes his manager doesn’t put him in the starting XI

2019 07 30 Retrieve

[Leroy Sane is no longer a guaranteed starter at Manchester City] He is a guy we appreciate, I like him a lot. I think he can be better. Two times, three times I have said that we want him to stay. That’s why he has an offer to extend his contract. It’s not in our hands. The agreement is good and if he wants to leave, I’ll be sad. Hopefully, he stays

[Guardiola admitted that he only wanted happy players at City but that it could be difficult to keep his entire squad in good spirits when they’re not playing every week or starting every game] The club made him an offer last year, as I said many times. We want people here to be happy. We are going to help him to be the best, we know his potential and what his level is. He has a special quality difficult to find around the world. He knows, they all know, it’s difficult because of the quality we have. But, at the same time, I spoke to the club 10 times I want people here to be happy. If they are not, they go. The desire to have him to be with us is always there

[Guardiola’s comments contrast sharply with those of Bayern head coach Niko Kovac as well as Sane’s potential team-mates in Munich, who always speak of the 23-year-old in glowing terms] Leroy Sane is a great footballer, he has proved it in England and with the national team. Our club management is very committed [to signing him]. It is not easy in this day and age, you see, otherwise it would already be sorted. But I am very confident. I assume we can get it [done]

: 2019 07 31 Niko Kovac says he has apologised to Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola after publicly stating he was confident Bayern Munich would buy Leroy Sane

: 2019 07 31b Pep Guardiola is among the 10 nominees that have been shortlisted for Best FIFA Men’s Coach of the year

: 2019 08 02 Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is on track to set another Premier League record, with one of Jose Mourinho’s marks in his sights. Guardiola is closing in on the record for least amount of matches required to get 100 Premier League wins

2019 08 02 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has insisted that he wants Leroy Sane to remain at the Etihad Stadium] What [director of football] Txiki Begiristain sent me two or three weeks ago, [told him] it [a contract agreement] was quite close. Now it’s not. Now it’s a bit different. That’s where it is. I’m not aware of the rumours. I want players who want to stay. The player didn’t tell me anything, that’s the reality. If he knocks on the door and says he wants to leave then we will speak with the club. We want him to stay here because we try to extend the contract for more than a year

[The City manager also suggested that there could be more business to be conducted in the transfer window at the Etihad before the August 8 deadline] [There could be a] few in and out

2019 08 02b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has hit back at Jurgen Klopp’s comments on Manchester City’s spending in the transfer market, rejecting the notion that Liverpool cannot compete with the Premier League champions financially] It bothers me because it’s not true that we spend hundreds of millions every transfer window. It’s Liverpool, ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’. It’s not a small team. It’s Liverpool. Of course, I don’t like it because it’s not true. Last season we spent £17m – one seven – on just one player. We cannot spend £200m every season. That is the reality. Other managers can say what they say but I can only say that is not true

2019 08 03 Retrieve

[What Man City chief Txiki Begiristain has told Pep Guardiola about Leroy Sane transfer] What Txiki (Begiristain) sent me two or three weeks ago, it was quite close. Now it’s not. I want players who want to stay because it’s impossible for me as a manager to convince a player to do what we want to do when his head is away from here. The player didn’t tell me anything about wanting to leave, so that is the only reality I have. If he knocks on the door and tells me he wants to leave then we are going to speak with the club. We want him to stay here because we try to extend the contract for more than one year. We were quite close a month ago and now it’s a little bit different but that’s the reality - I can’t say any more

2019 08 04 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola was shocked to find out that no Manchester City players were included in the list of candidates to win FIFA’s The Best award this year] It is because Manchester City is in this position the last decade. We are new in these situations. I cannot imagine Real Madrid and Barcelona winning four titles and not one single player being there [on the shortlist]. I don’t think there is one player who made a better season than Bernardo Silva last season, even winning [The Nations League] with Portugal. This club, for example, in eight years won four Premier Leagues. It is quite remarkable. And never in these four seasons was one of our players nominated the best in the league. Never. Huge respect for Mohamed Salah [who won the PFA and FWA awards in 2017-18], but Kevin De Bruyne that season, guys, when we made 100 points was above and beyond the normal situations

[Guardiola feels the domestic competition is too intense for them to put all of their effort into claiming the continental crown] The Champions League is an important tournament, difficult to win. But I don’t want to go to the casino and gamble everything I have in my pocket for seven games [the Champions League knockout stages]. I don’t want that. I think I want to be happy during 11 months. It makes me happy, the Premier League, every game in the cups. When I win, the days after I am happier. I go to the restaurants better, I feel better, I work better with my players. That’s what it gives me.

Am I going to wait until February to play seven games with everything on black colour? From my point of view, it’s too risky. Normally, when you have history behind it helps a lot. We are trying to build it and I think in Europe we will be closer when we win more Premier Leagues and Premier Leagues and Premier Leagues. I would sign right now to do what we did last season again. Right now. Not winning the Champions League and four titles [including the Community Shield] again in this season

[Guardiola phoned Jurgen Klopp to pass on his congratulations after they beat Spurs 2-0 in Madrid] Why can we not share the glory? We would like to win the Champions League - big respect to Liverpool. Winning the Champions League is so difficult, so, so complicated. That’s why winning the Champions League gets all credit. But why is it higher than what we have done over 11 months? I’m pretty sure Liverpool would have liked to win the last Premier League after 30 years not winning the Premier League. Both teams were fantastic last season. Why do you have to say this team is better than the other one? Both were good

2019 08 04b Retrieve

[Guardiola, who managed Bayern between 2013 and 2016, has previously said he would not stand in his way if the player really wanted to leave, a stance he reiterated when he asked about Sane by reporters in his press conference ahead of Sunday’s game against Liverpool] If he knocks on the door and says he wants to leave then we will speak with the club

2019 08 04c Retrieve

[Manchester City claimed the Community Shield on a penalty shootout. Gabriel Jesus was the man who struck the winner to spark celebrations from Guardiola and his men] A final. In the last 15 minutes we were exhausted

2019 08 04d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has congratulated cross-city rivals Manchester United on the imminent signing of Harry Maguire] Harry Maguire is a top class central defender. We were interested but we could not afford it. Man United could afford it. Congratulations to them

2019 08 04e Retrieve

[Guardiola expects Mahrez to be available when City begin their Premier League title defence against West Ham on Saturday] Riyad called me right after being champions with Algeria and told me he wanted to come back in 10 days and play against Liverpool. I said he was more than welcome! But we don’t know what he took, the medicine, and that’s why today doping control was a risk. The doctors didn’t [know], so that’s why he didn’t play. A guy who rested less, but could have played some minutes, but we could not take a risk because the doctors didn’t have exactly the medicines or what happened, and we did not want to take a risk. Hopefully, next game against West Ham and the future, everything will be normal

2019 08 05 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes there are many contenders for the Premier League title, including rivals Manchester United] I think United with Maguire and the other players they bought, Arsenal as well, Chelsea and Tottenham, they won all of their pre-season so I think there will be many, many contenders this time. But I think Liverpool… we were so happy when we realised which team we were going to face for the rest of the season, they are the champions of Europe, that’s why I gave a lot of credit to our victory today. The way we played, particularly in the first half, and the way we defended, but they are a top-class team. The difference can be one point ahead, one penalty ahead, that is the difference, it’s minor. Sometimes a call will come on your side, sometimes not, that’s why it’s good to face them, this is the team we are going to face this season. This is how well prepared we have to be until the end to try to win the titles

2019 08 05b Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola claimed his club couldn’t afford Harry Maguire] Harry Maguire is a top class central defender. We were interested but we could not afford it. Man United could afford it. Congratulations to them

2019 08 08 Retrieve

[Although coach Pep Guardiola has said several times that he hopes Sane extends his contract with City, he admitted recently that the club would be open to letting him go if he asks to leave] I’m not aware of the rumours. I want players who want to stay. The player didn’t tell me anything, that’s the reality. If he knocks on the door and says he wants to leave then we will speak with the club. We want him to stay here because we try to extend the contract for more than a year

2019 08 09 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is expecting Leroy Sane to be sidelined for up to seven months with knee ligament damage] Hopefully in February or March he can come back with us

[Guardiola added when quizzed on the Bayern speculation] I didn’t think he was leaving. He didn’t tell me he wanted to leave, he played the pre-season. Unfortunately it’s incredibly bad news because in three seasons we have had three ACLs. He’s a young player, hopefully he will recover well. He is in the best hands possible. All the people here are going to try to help him in the tough moment because he will feel alone after a few months

[City have already confirmed that Sane is due to go under the knife as he prepares to set out on the long road to recovery] He has undergone testing throughout the week, with a specialist doctor travelling to Manchester for further examinations to understand the extent of the injury. Leroy will have surgery in the coming week. Manchester City will provide Leroy with all the support and guidance he needs, and everyone connected with the club wishes him a quick and full recovery

2019 08 09b Retrieve

[David Silva has been confirmed as Manchester City’s new captain, with the Spaniard inheriting the armband from Vincent Kompany] David Silva will be our captain. The captain has to be what he is. David has been here a decade, he knows the club and the Premier League

I spoke once with him and said I’d be delighted if he stayed because he is a player that is so difficult to find in Europe in terms of personality and different positions. All I can say is thank you to him and the club for the effort to keep him with us for the next four years

[Joao Cancelo will not be in contention for a season opener against West Ham on Saturday, but is expected to challenge Kyle Walker for the Blues’ right-back berth this season] Kyle came and gave us something we didn’t have. Without him, it would have been so difficult. His physicality is beyond normal but we need competition. For Kyle, it is important to have good competition. What he had with Danilo, and with Cancelo it will happen again. Both have to fight for the position, Cancelo can play on the left as well so it’s good for the team. The guy who is more confident has more chances to play but Kyle knows everything about the way we want to play. Kyle right now is the first one

2019 08 10 Retrieve

[Manchester City midfielder Riyad Mahrez cleared after doping test] He had a little surgery after the African Cup on his nose so he could breathe better, it’s a normal situation. The doctor - I don’t think he was from the national team - didn’t send the necessary [paperwork], that was the only reason why [he didn’t play]. We didn’t have it in the right moment. But after the last week, anti-doping [agents] have made the test. Everything is clear and fine. He can play. Our doctors came to me and said they did not know exactly [what he had taken]. Every time you take something you have to inform the club and make the lists. Everyone knows it. We pass one or two controls every month here. We didn’t have it in that moment, he did it in Algeria. So it was a precaution, we had to be careful. It was better not to use him, that was the reason why. After this week, they came and tested him and he’s ready for tomorrow

When you think of defining the holding midfielder, he’s a typical, typical holding midfielder. Like Michael Carrick, like Sergio Busquets, [the] holding midfielder. You are thinking what is best for the team. He doesn’t play to make a good performance, he plays to make it better for the others. No tattoos, no ponytails. Perfect. Normal. That is a holding midfielder. He’s young, strong, helps us with the long balls, he’s so intelligent. He learned at Atletico Madrid with Diego Simeone. The work he did with Simeone is going to help us a lot this season. I have the feeling. Sometimes, players need more time but, after a week or 10 days, we realised that guy will be nice for us

2019 08 10b Retrieve

[West Ham vs Manchester City. Guardiola has in fact already tasted silverware success again this season, picking up the Community Shield once more, against Liverpool, who are widely tipped to be their key opponents in the hunt for glory again] I think United with Harry Maguire and the other players they bought, Arsenal as well, Chelsea and Tottenham, they won all of their pre-season so I think there will be many, many contenders this time. But I think Liverpool… we were so happy when we realised which team we were going to face for the rest of the season, they are the champions of Europe, that’s why I gave a lot of credit to our victory today. They are a top-class team. The difference can be one point ahead, one penalty ahead… that is the difference - it’s minor

2019 08 10c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is expecting Rodri to be an incredible addition for Manchester City] Rodri will be incredible for us. He doesn’t have tattoos or earrings. His hair, he looks like a holding midfielder! A holding midfielder must be like this, think about the rest [of the team].

[He said when quizzed on the club’s efforts to complete a hat-trick of Premier League title triumphs] We will try. We have to be a little better than the last season. I think we will need to have about 90- points to be champions. I don’t speak to the guys about needing to win the Premier League. We think about what is next. You focus has to be close

[Guardiola has helped to turn City in a global superpower during his three seasons in Manchester] Since I arrived here, and right now, I am not pretending to build the best. If maybe in five, 10, 15, 20 years people can talk about what we have done, then ‘wow’.

2019 08 10d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola saw Manchester City start their Premier League title defence with a 5-0 mauling of West Ham, but still considered their display to have been sloppy at times. Quizzed afterwards on whether he was happy with Man City’s day] In terms of the result, yes. I cannot deny I am delighted for the first game. After winning the last 14 games of last season, that’s 15 now. It is good

[Pressed on whether the performance pleased him] No. In the first half we were sloppy with our passes, we were not precise. But that’s normal. The first game, away, 12.30 kick-off, hot. It’s normal. In the second half, from the beginning we were better, more calm, more passes. After 3-0, the game was over

[With Sterling seeing his second goal of a treble checked and Sergio Aguero converting a retaken penalty that he initially missed] We had to be strong because at 3-0 we can say the game is almost over. But then it is 0-2 and Ederson is having to make amazing saves to stop it being 1-2. In this league, anything can happen. So you have to be 100 per cent ready, always be focused. My only wish is that VAR does not make mistakes. Please. If it is offside, it is offside. If it is hand, it is hand. Rules and rules. No problem. That is OK. My only concern is when VAR makes mistakes. But I think this will be more fair

[Finally, when asked if City can improve, with others expected to challenge them again for domestic dominance in 2019-20] We have to

2019 08 10e Retrieve

[Gary Neville said Fernandinho in particular was happy to foul to stop counter-attacks [tactical fouls], prompting Guardiola to respond] Never have my teams been focused on doing something wrong against the opponents

[Guardiola was riled again in April when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer suggested City would be happy to give away free-kicks to halt United in their tracks in the derby] I never prepare a game in 10 seasons as a manager thinking about this kind of thing. Never

2019 08 12 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola revealed Riyad Mahrez cut short his holiday following the Africa Cup of Nations, giving Manchester City a boost as Bernardo Silva dealt with an issue at West Ham on Saturday] Riyad called me after they won [the AFCON]. He said, ‘I need just 10 days. I want to come back soon. I want to play’. I like it. That’s why I decide, ‘Okay, I want to play him’. Bernardo had done nothing wrong, but there was some little muscular problems. I want them to know I trust all of them. That is the truth. After four seasons, I don’t not like one player who is with us. I trust with them and they have to compete with opponents and with each other

2019 08 16 Retrieve

[For Pep Guardiola, a key tactic in his overall strategy is to make sure his team cannot be countered] David, Kevin, Gundo, make fouls. If there is a transition, make a foul. We try to play and, of course, sometimes there are counterattacks and [we] make a foul. Sometimes, the action is a contact. We don’t think about it. Never in my teams are we focused on to make something wrong for the opponents. We are a team who always tries to attack, to defend well, to try to play our game, but [I’ve never] thought you have to do that (foul) to avoid what they (the opposition) do. Never happened in my career and never will happen in my career

2019 08 16b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola does not believe the Premier League title race will be contested between just Manchester City and Liverpool and is adamant Tottenham will be challengers] How good they are. I have spoken many times about Tottenham, you know my words and my opinion on them. They’re the second best team in Europe. For me, that’s enough. Since I came here to England, every season they were a real contender. First season, finish second. Last two seasons, always they were there. Always they were tough, tough games. All of the [big six are title contenders]. I’m impressed with how Chelsea played against tough teams like United and Liverpool. They didn’t win but I am surprised at how well they played. Frank Lampard’s team. We saw United, the quality they have up front with a new mood. Arsenal bought good players, with Nicolas Pepe, David Luiz and people in front like Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Dani Ceballos is incredible. A top player, quality. Tottenham are the same. They are really good contenders

[Despite Sterling having picked up where he left off last term, though, Guardiola has demanded even more from the England forward] There are many [great players], he is one. Look at the top six teams and you will find many, many players. The Premier League has incredible players. We have many, but Raheem still. I didn’t watch all the other games but he’s playing so good from the beginning, being clinical, but we want more, he wants more. It was just the first game of the Premier League season

2019 08 16c Retrieve

[Manchester City’s Leroy Sane to undergo surgery on ACL injury in Austria] I think [the operation] is this weekend

[Benjamin Mendy has been a regular patient of Dr Cugat’s since he joined City in 2017] What I want with Benj is to be fit, be ready for training sessions weeks and weeks and the weeks after. That is [the] target. After, for his specific qualities, he is going to help us. When he played, he played good. You know, he needs to play but he’s had almost two years out. We need him for our movements, our rhythm - many things we want to do. The first target is not to focus on playing, It is to be fit, for one month, train regularly, be ready and, of course, he has a chance to play

2019 08 16d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes that Raheem Sterling can score 30 goals across all competitions this season] Yeah, ­hopefully [he can score 30]. It will be good for him and for the team. When he’s in front of the goal, he puts it in the net. So, he can do it, yeah. He scored 25 last season, and 25 to 30 is only five goals. So he can do it

But I don’t know. I never spoke with Sergio Aguero, or Gabriel Jesus, or Raheem, with any of the people up front, about what are their dreams and targets, so I don’t know, ­honestly. I think they’re happy when they are scoring goals, like all the people who play in the front line. So, hopefully, he can score goals. I think goals are a ­consequence of the way we play - their mood, how the team’s playing, no injuries. I wouldn’t judge him if he scored 30 goals, 35 or 20. When he scores goals, I’m happy. But if he does what he has to do for him and the team, then it’s enough

[The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach also took the time to praise City’s title rivals this season, particularly Saturday’s opponents Tottenham] How good are [Tottenham]? My words and my opinion on them? They are the second-best team in Europe. For me, that’s enough. Since I came here to ­England, every season they were a real contender. In my first season, they ­finished ­second. In the last two seasons, they didn’t win it, but always they were tough, tough games. I said from the first day, when we played at White Hart Lane and lost 2-0, about the capacity, quality and possibilities of this team, the manager and the club. They are a strong team, a good team

2019 08 17 Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola believes his past Tottenham praise has been misunderstood by their coach Mauricio Pochettino ahead of their Premier League tussle on Saturday] I don’t know if Pochettino receives many compliments from other managers like me, I don’t think so. My opinion about him is high standards, even if he doesn’t believe me, so he’s a top, top, top, top manager

2019 08 17b Retrieve

[Manchester City vs Tottenham. Mauricio Pochettino is one of Pep Guardiola’s oldest and most respected managerial opponents] We learned how good they are on many occasions. They’re the second-best team in Europe. Since I came here to England they’ve been a real contender every season. The first season they finished second … they’ve always been there or thereabouts

2019 08 17c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola lamented that VAR needs to be fixed after he watched his Manchester City team have a last-minute winner against Tottenham ruled out on Saturday] I thought we left that situation in Tottenham in the Champions League last season. But it is the same. The referee and VAR disallow it. It’s the second time [it’s happened] - it’s tough. It’s honestly tough but it’s the way it is. It happened last week with Wolves and we saw for Chelsea on Wednesday - the keeper wasn’t on his line - Adrian in the penalty shoot-out. They have to fix it. The whistle inside matches now isn’t quite clear. But they believe it’s hands with Llorente in the Champions League and sometimes they don’t. It was incredible it wasn’t a penalty in the first half [for the foul on Rodri in the box] but VAR said it wasn’t and then at the end they did. I’m pretty sure people were happy today we just need to work harder at scoring our chances

[Man City twice led at the Etihad Stadium against Spurs before being pegged back, with goals from Erik Lamela and Lucas Moura cancelling out strikes from Sterling and Sergio Aguero] The way we played was incredible - I am so proud. The amount of shots we had was great and we only let them have two. People say we can improve but the result is all that counts in the end. We would like to win because the guys deserved it but sometimes football is like this. They crossed the halfway line maybe four or five times in 90 minutes so we defended well. [Goals from] corners happen when you have good takers and good headers but of course we will work on [defending them]

2019 08 17d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola insists the use of VAR must be more consistent after Manchester City were denied a late winner in the 2-2 draw against Tottenham] In the first half, the penalty? Ask the two referees around the corner. Then go to London to ask the VAR. Go to London, ask the big bosses. I’m not VAR. They make an example to Premier League managers, which I saw. But what can I say? It was a penalty. Lamela goes over Rodri, and it was a penalty. Maybe in that moment, VAR was taking a coffee. Why is it not handball with [Fernando] Llorente in the Champions League quarter-final last season, but why is it hands today? Why? That is what needs to be clarified. Why is [Andreas] Christensen not hands, and the Wolves game is hands? It’s a pity because it’s the last minutes. We lived through the Champions League and today it’s the last action and we scored a goal. But ask the VAR guys

[Gabriel Jesus replaced Sergio Aguero, who appeared to argue with Guardiola as he left the pitch, but City’s boss shrugged off any suggestion of a serious dispute] He believed that I was unhappy with him for the goal we conceded. But it was just the fact that I wanted movement in that moment and Aguero could not do that. But it’s part of our game, it’s emotions and we talked after and talked during. I love him a lot

2019 08 18 Retrieve

[Though City managed to defend their crown without him for large patches last season, Pep Guardiola is in no doubt over just how important Kevin De Bruyne can be] Unfortunately, last season we missed him a lot. We did incredibly well without him, but we are stronger with him. Last season he didn’t have a holiday, but he has had more time to rest and he came back like he did two seasons ago. Hopefully he can keep his level. He’s incredibly positive in his mind and his quality speaks for itself. He’s a guy who likes to play football. He’s a huge competitor. What we want now is to be calm and not get injuries

2019 08 23 Retrieve

[Guardiola says he supports system which ‘brings justice’ despite Man City disappointments] I like VAR because it provides justice. This is the first season. It helps to be more fair to referees. I think in the end it will be right. I had the same opinion from the beginning. I support the technology. But during the process, it needs time to adjust. It’s emotional when you score a goal in that way. His [Jesus’] reaction was normal. He was not upset. The reaction from the Tottenham players showed that they didn’t know why it was disallowed. They accepted it was a goal. The reaction of our players was normal. We have to keep going. It’s done. We have to move forward

[New signing Joao Cancelo could be handed his debut with Guardiola confirming he is fully ready to take part] He can play. He is ready. He sees what we want in training, meetings and analysis. Tomorrow, he can play. After the international break, everyone will be involved. He’s an incredible professional

2019 08 23b Retrieve

[Guardiola: I doubted milestone man David Silva before he arrived at City] Yep, me included [in those who thought Silva would struggle]. I think it’s his character. It’s not just his quality to move in small spaces, it’s that he’s a huge competitor. In the training sessions, the games, in the bad moments, how he reacts, he is a huge competitor. For his specific qualities to survive in the Premier League is not easy for a long time. And he did it. He has to be so proud of himself and what he has done. He’s a technical player - he’s not a box-to-box - and my image of English football from the outside was that maybe he’s going to falter. But I was happily, happily wrong. That was my first impression, but from the beginning - it’s not just that David played well this season - he was playing good with other managers, Roberto Mancini, Manuel Pellegrini, with us

After I spoke with managers he had in Spain, what everybody speaks, I realised what I realised here. Everybody knows about his quality with the ball, but he’s more than that. He’s incredible. He is a competitor, a winner. Four Premier Leagues he won, and a lot of domestic prizes. This generation of players - like Joe Hart, Vincent Kompany, Sergio Aguero - helped to make this club in a better position in the Premier League and in European competition

[Discussing his appearance milestone] I admire a lot. What I admire the most is when you look at these records or numbers. To do 400 games means many years, many bad moments, many good moments, being there day by day, week by week. I admire that a lot. You can have a good year, a good season, but almost 10 seasons here doing that is just incredible. Big congratulations. For the City supporters - me included - it is a privilege what he has done at this club. Hopefully, in the last season he is going to be here, he can help us to achieve

2019 08 24 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is confident Manchester City can have an even better season than they did in 2018-19] I don’t believe in statistics. I believe in the spirit, in what I can smell, and the way we are playing and after the way we played against Tottenham I think we can do it. Even though we drew, that game showed we can do even better than last season. Our game last week was better than when we beat Chelsea 6-0 last season. The level was so good. It was incredible. If we maintain the way we are training and the competitive feeling between the players then we can try to be better

[Guardiola admits his team’s busy schedule will affect their performances] I think it is impossible to sustain every three days playing the way we played against Tottenham. The emotion of the first game at home, the finalists of the Champions League, the emotion of the players, they were incredibly focused. The problem when you play every three days, you have to lift them. ‘Come on, let’s go guys, it is another one and another one’, but the level was so good. It was incredible, the way we play, so we try to keep going and build up from here

2019 08 25 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola appreciates Raheem Sterling’s willingness to listen] I think he’s a better player, like I said last season. It’s all [to] his credit, his desire to be better. I think every player is good when they understand what we want to do as a group… he’s a guy who is incredibly receptive when we have our talks, when Mikel [Arteta, City first-team coach] speaks with him or myself. It’s nice, when they don’t get that feeling like ‘oh, always pushing me or criticising me’. He’s open. From day one since we arrived. That’s why he’s becoming an incredible, exceptional player. After that his physicality [is excellent], he plays every three days and no injuries. He runs a lot and his genetics are so strong. It’s good

Normally for a winger to score goals and be top scorer, it is not easy because they play further away from the goal. He has an incredible sense of arriving in the box and scoring when the ball is on the other side. He is fantastic at that. When he plays more central all his movement is towards the goal and for a winger that is incredible. Some players play well but they forget the ball is there. He always has the sense of where the ball will be and will attack there because if it arrives, he will score a goal

2019 08 25b Retrieve

[Bournemouth vs Manchester City. Guardiola insists on total focus in all of his side’s matches and is aware of the threat this week’s opponents can pose] We know each other quite well. They have the same manager as four years ago. They have the same points as us. They defend deep with the 5-3-2. They attack really well. It’s always tough

2019 08 25c Retrieve

[Coach Pep Guardiola has trusted him with the captain’s armband, however, and he revealed his admiration for Silva ahead of the Premier League clash at Bournemouth] I admire a lot what he has done. What I admire the most is to play 400 games - almost 10 seasons here, doing what he has done, it is incredible. Big congratulations from me. Every City fan supports him - it is a privilege for everyone, what he has done in this club

The last season, he can help us play the way we want to play and try and make him happy. He’s one of the most incredibly intelligent players at moving the space. Everybody takes time but he’s very good in small spaces - one of best I’ve ever known. I thought he wouldn’t succeed in England. He is hugely competitive. In the bad moments, how he reacts is fantastic. He’s a technical player - not box to box and my image of English football back in 2010, I admit I thought he was going to suffer. I was happily wrong. That was my first impression. He played well from the beginning and he’s done it consistently ever since, for Roberto Mancini, Manuel Pellegrini and me.

His qualities - surviving the Premier League is not easy for that length of time, but he did it. He should be so proud of what he’s done. He has quality with the ball, but he has so much more than that. He’s a winner. Four Premier League, plus a lot of domestic prizes. He’s the same generation as Joe Hart, Vincent Kompany, Sergio Aguero and has helped this Club to be in a better position. Moreover, he’s a nice guy who is our captain. The players chose him. I’m not involved. They had to choose a captain to represent the whole team - it was their decision

2019 08 25d Retrieve

[Bournemouth (1) vs (3) Manchester City. Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola lauded David Silva as one of the best players he has ever seen after the Spaniard starred in his 400th appearance for the club] He played incredibly well. David, in this kind of game - with a defence so deep and with such few spaces - is so good. He’s one of the best players I’ve ever seen. What can I say? Everyone knows David. He moves between the lines like no one else in the world, he is a fighter

[Sterling’s goal was his fifth in the league already this season] We didn’t create so many chances, but Raheem is still scoring goals, which is good for us. There are a few things to improve that’s good that that has happened while winning games, but we knew it, every time they set up so deep 5-4-1, long balls and they are so strong with King, Wilson and Billing and set pieces with good throw ins all the time in the boxes they are stronger than us. But, okay. The quality of our players made the difference and we won the game

2019 08 25e Retrieve

[Bournemouth (1) vs (3) Manchester City. Asked about the challenge on David Silva against Bournemouth] No, no, no, penalty, no, no. It was clear hands last game [against Tottenham], I saw the last game. Penalty? No, please

[Asked whether he was briefed that about potential VAR issues in a meeting of all Premier League managers before the season started] Ask [that question] to the VAR people, don’t ask to me

[Guardiola gave a positive outlook of his side’s prospects after victories over West Ham and Bournemouth and a draw with Tottenham in their opening matches] The challenge this season will be amazing for us. After winning two titles back-to-back the challenge will be great

2019 08 26 Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola called on governing bodies to fix the process after his side had a late winner against Tottenham ruled out last week in another VAR controversial incident] They have to fix it. The whistle inside matches now isn’t quite clear. But they believe it’s hands with [Fernando] Llorente in the Champions League [last season] and sometimes they don’t

2019 08 27 Retrieve

[Who will play in Vincent Kompany’s testimonial?] To have the opportunity to manage the Manchester City Legends for this game is an honour and a privilege for me. Vincent’s place in the pantheon of City greats is secure and for me to have the chance to be so involved in his testimonial really means a lot. It was immediately clear to me when taking over at City just how important Vincent was to this football club

2019 08 29 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola, a coach who always demands the very highest standards from his players, said in 2016 about Robert Lewandowski] He is the most professional player I have ever met. He is always there, never injured, because he focuses on these things. I was always very, very pleased with him, from the first moment

2019 08 29b Retrieve

[Guardiola wants Champions League success for Man City - but not at all costs] I know we will be judged at the end on whether we win the Champions League. I know unless we do that it will not be enough. This comes with [my profile], I know that. I arrived in Barcelona, we were lucky we won it two times in four years, and the people expect I am something special that we have to win the Champions League and it’s still true

[Publicly Guardiola insists the Champions League can’t be seen as the priority] Of course we have to win in Europe because it’s an important tournament and difficult to win. But I am not going to go to the casino and gamble everything I have in my pocket on just seven games. I want to be happy for 11 months - and winning the Premier League makes me happy. Why am I going to wait until February for seven games and put everything on black?

2019 08 29c Retrieve

[United ended up offering Alexis Sanchez a £390,000 ($477,000) weekly salary and £75,000 ($92,000) starting bonus, which means he has cost the club around £55 million ($67m) since his arrival in January 2018. In return, they got five goals in all competitions, a string of desperately poor performances and a dressing room full of players wondering why the guy contributing the least was getting paid by far the most] Normally we try to be stable with the wages of the players because I think it is good for the team and stability of the club. I’ve never put pressure on a club when they believe it is too much. Immediately, I accept that decision and move forward to find another solution. The stability of the club is the most important thing

2019 08 30 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola expressed gratitude to Didier Deschamps for picking the best left-sided central defender in Europe after Aymeric Laporte finally received a France call-up] It was a mistake when I said he is one of the best - for me, he is the best left-sided central defender in Europe. I’m incredibly grateful to Didier Deschamps and so happy for [Laporte] because he deserves it. All of us were so happy for him because he was looking for this call for a long time and hopefully he can stay. Now it depends on him.

Of course, Kyle and myself are not involved. We respect the decision and I think Kyle will come back strong. It’s [Southgate’s] decision, of course, I understand him and support the manager of the national team

[Walker’s good form at club level has earned him three Premier League starts this season and restricted new signing Joao Cancelo to a brief cameo in the win over Bournemouth] With Joao, we are delighted with what we have seen. But he arrived late so was not in pre-season. There are many things Kyle knows completely well. Joao is starting to understand what to do and maybe [against Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday] or maybe after the international break he will start to play

2019 08 30b Retrieve

[Kyle Walker is facing a fight to keep his starting place for Manchester City and England] Kyle Walker is incredibly strong and he will be back. He is back because he played really well in this beginning of the season; and try to understand Wan-Bissaka, Alexander-Arnold, are incredible full-backs too. So it’s the same, he has to continue performing well to come back to the national team. When he is stable in the mind, he knows exactly what he has to do, always perform well. And he’s consistent, always to be an average defensively seven, eight, seven, eight all the time so that is what we have to work on with him

[Summer signing Joao Cancelo will also put him under pressure for a starting spot at the Premier League champions after the international break] When we come back after the international break, with Norwich, then travel to Ukraine, then three days later we have another game here and then the cup, that’s the start of the real season. Joao Cancelo, we’re delighted with what we’ve seen but he arrived late and he wasn’t in pre-season. There are many things Kyle knows completely and Joao is starting to understand what to do. Maybe tomorrow, maybe after the international break. He needs to be ready and when he is, he will play

2019 08 31 Retrieve

[Guardiola backs Manchester United flop Alexis Sanchez to shine alongside Romelu Lukaku at Intermilan] I know him. We worked together in Barcelona - I have a special affection [for him] as a player, of course, but especially as a human being. He’s an incredible, humble guy and a fighter. Now he has decided to move to Italy with one of the greatest teams in Europe right now with Inter, [who have an] incredible manager with Antonio Conte, and I’m pretty sure they are going to do well. I think the way Inter play suits him perfectly. Playing close to Lukaku and, in this position, I think he is going to have a good period in Milan

[Sanchez has managed only five goals in 45 appearances at United but Guardiola believes the blame can’t be pinned solely on the forward] Football doesn’t depend on one player. You judge it was a failure for Alexis, but there are many reasons. They don’t play alone - it’s not tennis, it’s not golf. To play with 10 players against one system, against opponents, against many, many things that are involved in one player performing well in the team. I don’t know what happened, I was not there, I will not be there, so that’s why I cannot give my opinion - but I am not thinking it is just for one reason

2019 08 31b Retrieve

[Manchester City vs Brighton. Pep Guardiola has admitted that the success of their season will likely only be measured by glory on the continent, following Liverpool’s efforts earlier this year] I know we will be judged at the end on whether we win the Champions League. I know unless we do that it will not be enough. This comes with [my profile], I know that. I arrived in Barcelona, we were lucky we won it two times in four years, and the people expect I am something special that we have to win the Champions League and it’s still true

[Guardiola hailed Aymeric Laporte as one of the finest in the game] It was a mistake when I said he is one of the best - for me, he is the best left-sided central defender in Europe. All of us were so happy for him because he was looking for this call for a long time and hopefully he can stay. Now it depends on him

[He did, however, admit surprise over Kyle Walker’s England exit] Of course, Kyle and myself are not involved. We respect the decision and I think Kyle will come back strong. It’s [Southgate’s] decision, of course, I understand him and support the manager of the national team

2019 08 31c Retrieve

[Manchester City (4) vs (0) Brighton and Hove Albion. Losing Aymeric Laporte to injury would be a major blow even for Man City] He has gone to the hospital. Tomorrow we will know exactly what he has. I think he will be out for a while

2019 08 31d Retrieve

[Manchester City (4) vs (0) Brighton and Hove Albion. Pep Guardiola fears defender Aymeric Laporte could be set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines after he was carried off on a stretcher] I think he’s gone to hospital. It doesn’t look good. I don’t know right now what he has but we will know tomorrow. They’re diagnosing what he has right now. I’m waiting for the doctor to call me. He might be out for a while.

[Looking back on the game Guardiola said the scoreline was not a fair reflection and praised Brighton for their positive approach] The game was tough. If we analyse the result it was 4-0, but it was tough. Few teams come here and play with such courage. My players are good players and they made the difference - that’s why we won today

[Guardiola also took time out to praise Aguero, who has found the back of the net in all four games he has played this season] From day one I’ve been impressed by Sergio Aguero’s commitment. We need his goals, everyone knows it. Even on the days when he doesn’t score goals, his commitment is fantastic. I’m happy for him and the team because he helps us a lot with the goals

2019 08 31e Retrieve

[Manchester City (4) vs (0) Brighton and Hove Albion. Pep Guardiola hailed Sergio Aguero claims Sergio Aguero would die scoring goals] Sergio scored goals when he was in Argentina at 16 years old and he will die scoring goals. He is a special talent and I love that he tries to do it. From day one we have changed many things, but I am delighted about his commitment. Of course we need his goals, everybody knows it. He helps us a lot with his goals, but even the days he doesn’t score, we need the commitment. He is like this from day one, so I’m happy for him. The game was tough, if we analyse the result it was 4-0 but the performance was not because Brighton did really well. Few teams come here to play with this courage. My players up front are incredibly good and they make the difference. Managers like Graham Potter are good for football

[Guardiola said of Fernandinho] Fernandinho is a holding midfielder, everyone knows it, me included, but I think he has the conditions to play there [at centre-back]. The problems we have there is a situation which he is going to adapt to. He is intelligent, fast, strong in the headers and, in the build-up, he has the quality to see what happens in front. He can play in both positions. [But play there] for the rest of his career, I don’t know

2019 09 02 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has claimed that Manchester City could not afford to buy a replacement for Vincent Kompany, despite his team spending around £130 million over the summer] We could not buy like our opponents or what teams offered us or asked of us for these players. Of course, we spent a lot two seasons ago, but last season one player, this season a little bit more so we could not pay the money wanted. But we have an alternative and sometimes when that happens the team unites better and we are going to find solutions to that. The club works incredibly well in all departments and sometimes we cannot afford it like other teams afford it and that is all

[Guardiola acknowledged his team’s depth, but said the club had told him he had a budget he could not exceed] We pay a lot of money for a lot of players, that is why we have a depth of squad with huge quality, be we cannot [sign a central defender]. The club tell me you have a limit, you cannot go forward. Maybe in the future, but not now, you cannot do it. I say OK, you cannot do it so we cannot do it so we are going with what we have

2019 09 02b Retrieve

[Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte has flown to Barcelona to undergo further tests on his injured knee] I think he’s gone to hospital. It doesn’t look good. I don’t know right now what he has but we will know tomorrow. They’re diagnosing what he has right now. I’m waiting for the doctor to call me. He might be out for a while

2019 09 04 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola said on Saturday that he expected Aymeric Laporte to be out for ‘a while’] He’s gone to hospital. It doesn’t look good. I don’t know right now what he has but we will know tomorrow. They’re diagnosing what he has right now. I’m waiting for the doctor to call me. He might be out for a while

During the season it happens and the other guys are going to make a step forward. One day we need to use Kyle Walker as a central defender, he is going to play central defender, so we are going to find solutions

2019 09 06 Retrieve

[Guardiola insists Phil Foden’s time will come] [The young players] have to fight and be patient and work and work and don’t complain too much. The time is coming and the moment is coming, to show all of them - the moment to say, ‘I am here and ready’. He’s going to the Under-21s and he is going to play. Everything is in the right position

2019 09 12 Retrieve

[Sergio Aguero has been so consistently good for the past decade that his goals almost go unnoticed these days] Sergio scored goals when he was in Argentina at 16 years old and he will die scoring goals

[Guardiola added after the Brighton win] We don’t have two incredible players like Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi that score 50 or 60 goals a season but, in the past two seasons, we scored an incredible amount of goals

2019 09 13 Retrieve

[Guardiola is remaining positive and hoping to have Aymeric Laporte back at his disposal early in 2020] Not long, five months, six months, next year… January or February.

[Sane, like Laporte, was forced under the knife and is now on the long road to recovery] In December, January, could be perfect

[Benjamin Mendy is not yet ready to step back into the City side, but is making steady progress in his rehabilitation from a latest injury setback] He is good. His knee is reacting well so hopefully in the next few games. We want to be careful and sure when he starts to play

2019 09 13b Retrieve

[Guardiola urges Sterling to ignore big billing] I’m so happy for him, for the way he’s playing here and national team, but hopefully he won’t read or listen to these kind of things. Nobody can compare with Cristiano or Messi. I don’t know if he’s the best in England. Since we’re together, not just now, he’s been incredible with his work ethic. He’s a nice guy, I’m delighted for him

I’m not predicting, every week there are incredible predictions, there’s a tendency for that but we’ve played four Premier League games and that’s nothing. We start the real competition, we play Saturday, then travel, play Wednesday, land Thursday, Saturday we have Premier League and then we go to Preston to play the Carabao Cup. Of the next five games we’ve got four away, many things can happen, we’ve had two terrible injuries with Leroy Sane and Aymeric Laporte. It’s too early to say what is going to happen. Chelsea, United, Tottenham, Everton doing well, everything can happen, but it’s four games, in February or March we can say better. Now it’s just four games and it’s nothing

2019 09 13c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has no plans to bring in a new defender in January to cover for injured Aymeric Laporte - at the moment] My advice to you is not to write too many names about the winter transfer window, because you are going to make a mistake. I don’t think it’s going to happen. I heard already we are interested in this player or the other player. I would like to say to all the clubs in the world don’t be nervous, because we are not interested in any players or central defenders in Europe. We are going to survive with the players we have. Maybe in December we are going to start to think about it, maybe. But we could not invest in this situation in the summer, we cannot do it in the winter

[Guardiola says John Stones has no doubts about his quality despite a tough six months when he lost his place in the City side] He’s going to play incredible this period, while Laporte is not with us. I don’t have any doubts about his quality. The same case as Nico Otamendi. And I’m pretty sure the young players will [play well] too, what I know from pre-season with Taylor Harwood-Bellis and especially Eric Garcia. Fernandinho with his quality can play there. So we’re going to move on.

[The City boss says no other player in the world can currently compare to the duo because of the high standards they have set for the past 10 years] They won the Ballon d’Or and all the individual prizes every single season except maybe this season and another one. The consistency of these two guys - they are legends, they are something unique in world football. If Raheem can target that level… wow! Right now, nobody in this club and in all the clubs in the world, nobody can compare these two guys what they have done and what they have done every single week during [those] 10 years. They are absolute legends these two players and nobody can compare. Nobody

2019 09 14 Retrieve

[Norwich vs Manchester City. Guardiola is wary not to take anything for granted as an important juncture of the season approaches] We have played four games, which is nothing. Now we start the real competition, we play Saturday, we travel to Ukraine Monday and play Wednesday, we land Thursday afternoon and Saturday we have the Premier League and then go to Preston. Of the next five games [in all competitions], four are away. Many things can happen, we have had two terrible injuries with Leroy Sane and Aymeric Laporte, so we will see

2019 09 14b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says fans can’t expect Manchester City to win every game, after they were beaten 3-2 at Norwich on Saturday evening] I know what we are as a team. I know what they have done, what we are going to do again, and I love my players. It’s a pleasure and an honour to be with them. This is the challenge at the high level. People cannot expect us to win or pick up 100 points all the time. We’re going to recover, we go to play in Europe now and then we will come back

[Guardiola underlined his faith that the pair will shine in Laporte’s absence] How many games have John and Nico played together in these, more than three years together? A lot. Thanks to them, we have won, so we cannot analyse just the last eight or 10 games. They are the central defenders we have, we don’t have any more. We have Fernandinho who can play there, we can maybe play Rodri there. It’s not a worry. Normally I count how many chances [our opponents] create and I think they didn’t create too much, honestly. So there was the three goals, but I don’t know how many other shots on target they had, how many chances. I don’t have that feeling, that they had many, many, many chances. It happens sometimes. For example, Bournemouth, they had more chances than [Norwich had] today, and we won that game. But of course you have to improve

2019 09 15 Retrieve

[Man City manager Pep Guardiola has looked to pour cold water on Sterling being prematurely compared to the game’s greats] I’m so happy for him, for the way he’s playing here and national team, but hopefully he won’t read or listen to these kind of things. Nobody can compare with Cristiano or Messi. I don’t know if he’s the best in England. Since we’re together, not just now, he’s been incredible with his work ethic. He’s a nice guy, I’m delighted for him

2019 09 15b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has ‘congratulated’ rivals Liverpool on winning the Premier League after Manchester City’s loss at Norwich] We’re in September… we’re going to do that? Okay: congratulations, Liverpool, you are the champions. We’re in September! We’ll recover, go to Ukraine, then we come back. Of course, we’ve dropped five points. Tottenham was a pity because we played very well. Against Norwich, it was in the important parts, in set pieces for example, that the players have to know exactly what to do

[Guardiola did, however, play down any concerns this early in the season, expressing his delight at working with the current group of players] It’s a joy as a trainer to be with these guys. I don’t know what’s going to happen this season until the last part of my period here. But not even one second am I going to doubt what the players have done for me, for the club, for everybody. I am a guy who says the truth all the time. In the changing room, I speak with them and at the same time I know the commitment in every single training session and in all they do. We are going to keep going every time until the end

2019 09 15c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola refused to criticise Manchester City side after their shock 3-2 defeat at Norwich City, saying they are the same players that stopped him being known as Fraudiola] They gave me all the prestige I have in England, when the first season when it was Fraud Guardiola, Fraudiola. This kind of game here in England - it’s not possible to play because you need to have tackles and you have to play like that - these players gave me the prestige that I have. And now all around the world people say how good a manager I am - it’s for them, not for me

[Guardiola put the blame on his tactical decisions and individual errors rather than a lack of spirit] With Newcastle it was completely different, we scored one goal and we forgot to play, [against Norwich] that didn’t happen. We were not precise up front or we made individual mistakes but I am responsible for that, but that is part of the game. Sometimes it happens and the players know it’s not necessary to tell them or watch some clips. Right now in the locker room they know they have to improve on that or it will not be possible to compete [for the title].

[The midfielder said the players will quickly put the defeat behind them with the Champions League starting on Wednesday with a trip to Shakhtar Donetsk] Nobody was shouting or angry with each other. You know, everybody makes mistakes. It gets magnified when you lose, you also make mistakes when you win. In the end, the people may be a little bit down you pick them up as a team and you go on a Wednesday and try to win the game because it’s important to win the away game in Shakhtar Donetsk. Last year, we were seven points behind [Liverpool]. Of course we want to we want to win every game but it is difficult. You have to give respect to the other team also and they did well

2019 09 16 Retrieve

[Guardiola backed experienced central midfielder Fernandinho to possibly deputise in defence, while also mentioning youngsters Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis as additional options] I would like to say to all the clubs in the world don’t be nervous, because we are not interested in any players or central defenders in Europe. We are going to survive with the players we have. Maybe in December we are going to start to think about it, maybe. But we could not invest in this situation in the summer, we cannot do it in the winter. I’m pretty sure the young players will [play well] too, what I know from pre-season with Taylor Harwood-Bellis and especially Eric Garcia. Fernandinho with his quality can play there. So we’re going to move on

2019 09 17 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has confirmed John Stones has been ruled out up to five weeks with a muscle injury] A month, four or five weeks.

[The City boss said he could also turn to teenage duo Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis to address the growing injury crisis at the back] [It is a] big challenge. For me as a manager, it’s an incredible challenge: just one central defender in Nico. But I believe a lot. People don’t know the spirit and resolve to solve this problem. The players are going to come back with Fernandinho, Garcia, Harwood-Bellis. It’s happened, but what we are not going to do is complain. If they are not able, they are not able. We have to have 11 players on the pitch, and I like it, finding a solution. Football is not about how you deal with the good things but how you deal with the problems. Nobody gave us anything when we win the last seven titles and we are going to do the same [fight for titles]. I’m ready for the challenge, I like it. We will deal with the situation

[Fernandinho is set to deputise at centre-back against Shakhtar although the Brazil international has yet to feature this season] He arrived late, and he’s a player who’s 34 and needs minutes and rhythm. So, he trained the last after the international break really well. The family is back with him, which is important for him because the first period he was alone. With his experience and personality, he can play that position because sometimes he played there last season, and now with Eric and Taylor we will use him in that position with Nico

[City will also be without Phil Foden against Shakhtar] He has a virus, a problem with the stomach. He’s not able [to play] this game or I think the next

2019 09 18 Retrieve

[Guardiola also adding that he will likely turn to teenage duo Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis to address the growing injury crisis at the back] Other players can play in that position, but Fernandinho is a clever player, so intelligent, an incredible guy. He did well the first game he played. He has a lot of experience and personality and what he says, the people follow him in the dressing room

2019 09 19 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has said he must look for more defensive options because Fernandinho and Nicolas Otamendi are too old to play every game] I didn’t have doubts [Fernandinho] could do it. Nico is 31, Fernandinho is 34 and the next alternative Eric Garcia is 18. For three or four months I don’t know what will happen. Both were incredible tonight. Nico showed incredible personality after what happened in the previous game. We need another solution – Rodri or Kyle Walker maybe – because they cannot play every game at their age

2019 09 20 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has declared Liverpool the strongest opponents I have faced in my career as a manager] You have to understand what we have done in the past does not ensure you can do it tomorrow or the day after. The opponents we have, I’ve said many times, are the strongest opponents I have faced in my career as a manager - Liverpool. These are not weak words. I said it when they were in front, I said it when we were in front; when we won and we lose. They have absolutely everything in terms of a positional game, counter-attack, set pieces, transitions, offensive, defensive and mentality. Anfield the stadium - many things. I know how difficult it was, how difficult it is and how difficult it will be. But that is the challenge. The same with the central defenders. We go, ‘Okay, let’s find a solution to keep the team stable and good’

We don’t have many other options. Rodri can play there and of course two young players who we trust a lot, especially Eric Garcia. Last season he was training all season with us. Taylor Harwood-Bellis was with us in the pre-season and we were impressed. It is not a problem, it is a challenge. I don’t take these situations like a problem. It is important to be positive in your mood. If we do it we will be happy; if we don’t do it we will work harder

[Guardiola also offered reflections on City’s stunning reverse at Norwich and a 2-1 defeat at Newcastle United] After watching the game against Norwich, I was not really upset for the way we played. I was upset after Newcastle [last season] - after 1-0 after one minute we forgot to play. Against Norwich we shot more than 15 times and we could have one. In Newcastle I don’t have that feeling after one minute

2019 09 20b Retrieve

[Manchester City are finally getting the Riyad Mahrez they signed from Leicester City] Riyad loves to play football and he loves the training sessions and he loves to be in contact with the ball. I like these type of players. He goes to the training pitch and he takes the ball and he plays with the ball and has fun with the ball. That is maybe a stupid detail but I like it

[Competition at Man City is fierce and it can take time to adapt to Guardiola’s footballing philosophy] Perhaps the only thing he has to improve is to be more relaxed when he doesn’t play. Only that. The rest is top

[Guardiola, though, was pleased with Mahrez’s debut season overall, though] When he played last season, he played good, except the first few games maybe, but it’s normal. You arrive with new players and try to understand what they want. They played many, many years together [at Leicester], where they sit back, use the counterattack and here it’s a little bit different. There is no doubt we need the quality and especially the mentality. Especially how competitive he is surprised me a lot

[Guardiola, though, sees Mahrez as a key player in City’s bid to end their wait for Champions League success] In terms of making bad actions, he wants the ball, he wants to try again. That’s the best detail for the players in the big clubs in the big stages and it’s the most difficult thing to find. And he is quality

2019 09 20c Retrieve

[Guardiola has no desire to see Fernandinho leave, even if he is unsure about what is happening in terms of discussions] It’s not my business, I’m sorry guys, it’s Txiki Begiristain’s [City sporting director] business.

[Guardiola added when asked if he wanted the Brazilian to stay] Of course, he is a joyful player. What he has done for all of us, especially me as a manager, our time together has paid off, it’s incredible. He’s incredible, so no doubts

[Left-back Benjamin Mendy is closing in on a return to fitness] In the future he is going to play a little bit more regularly and try to understand what we want to do, because he has missed two seasons without training and the guy, to understand things, he has to practice. Just for the videos, or just talking, he has to train and play and play and play and always we dreamed that he would be an incredibly important player for us. With him we can attack more constantly, he brings a special quality that only he has in our team, so with [Oleksandr] Zinchenko we cannot attack the wides and deep, but his qualities are completely different. With Mendy we can do that. Hopefully he can be fit, healthy and play

2019 09 20d Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said he is ‘pretty sure’ that current assistant Mikel Arteta will succeed him in the future] I’m pretty sure [he’ll succeed me]. He will have success. Sooner or later it’s going to happen (Arteta becoming a manager). He’s a young, young manager. He has experience already, handling big players and big teams. He’s got an incredible work ethic. He has a special talent to analyse what happens and to find solutions. We talk a lot about what he believes and how he feels. He was a holding-midfielder too and I think he reads the situations. The best [midfielders] play thinking about what the team needs in every single moment. He was a master of that. When he was able to see what was needed on the pitch, when you’re off the pitch it’s easier

[Guardiola has praised Arteta’s character, saying that he understands how to command a dressing room] He’s a guy who’s so happy when we win but also suffers a lot when we don’t. He’s an incredible person, an incredible human being, with incredible values about the dressing room and what it means to be together. He’s already an incredible, incredible manager. He will have incredible success in the future

2019 09 21 Retrieve

[Manchester City vs Watford. Guardiola has refused to be drawn on whether he will still be at City this time next season, but he has backed his assistant Mikel Arteta to be his ultimate successor with the club] I’m pretty sure [he’ll succeed me]. He will have success. Sooner or later it’s going to happen [Arteta becoming a manager]. He’s a young, young manager. He has experience already, handling big players and big teams. He’s got an incredible work ethic. He has a special talent to analyse what happens and to find solutions

2019 09 21b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City’s players have nothing to prove after they returned to winning ways in the Premier League with a record 8-0 win over Watford on Saturday] Do you think after what these guys have done for two seasons they have to prove something? We listened after Norwich, but people don’t understand that we can lose games. Sometimes I am surprised that former players and pundits still don’t understand that

Bernardo was the best player last season. He was extraordinary. I don’t think he needs to score three goals to get the credit he deserves

2019 09 21b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City’s flying start in their 8-0 demolition of Watford was weird and not normal] It is weird, it is not normal. Five shots, five goals. In the same time, we gave them two chances to score. The quality we have is a joy to watch. After 5-0 the game is completely different. We were ruthless in terms of five shots, five goals. Sometimes you shoot 15 times or 20 and can’t do it. It was a lovely day for all of us, for our City fans in the sunshine and a lot of goals

[Guardiola was impressed by the continued application of his players throughout the contest] The best way to humiliate the players is to do stupid things in the second half, make some fashion movements [showboating]. We play for the spectators, who come here to watch the game. I would not like to see my team in the second half not run much because we are winning 5-0. That is a lack of respect for our opponents

[Benjamin Mendy was withdrawn at half-time on his first start since April] Benjamin Mendy is well. After two years without playing, 45 minutes was enough. Angelino [who made his Premier League debut as Mendy’s replacement] is incredible. He deserves to play after 5-0. I am glad. I saw many good things

2019 09 22 Retrieve

[Man City boss Pep Guardiola, who was manager of Bayern Munich at the time, was asked about the reports in the aftermath of his side’s 8-0 Premier League win over Watford on Saturday] What happened in Liverpool I don’t know, you have to ask them. I am not there, I don’t know. It was 2013, I was not there. I prefer not to do any comment and not use the internet the next time. Today, there are not secrets anymore. Look what happened in the big governments in the United States and Russia, and everywhere everyone knows it. No secrets anymore. You want to keep a secret? Don’t tell to a friend, on devices or the internet, mobile phone. Today anything can happen

2019 09 22b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has said that he’s happy to have Kevin De Bruyne back to his best form after an injury-hit 2018-19 season] Kevin sometimes is a special player. He sees things others cannot see on the pitch, or even off the pitch. Sometimes he frustrates me when he loses simple balls. How can he lose it with his quality? But he is an incredibly talented player, with his vision up front and the quality of his shooting. With Kevin it depends on his mood. Sometimes it is low but when he is happy, he’s an incredible, fantastic player. We missed him a lot. We had an incredible season, winning four titles, but we missed him a lot. He’s a special player. I’m happy he is here

[Guardiola was pleased to see Man City come back from the defeat at Norwich] Football, sport, life, has bad moments. It’s how you handle them and react to it. It’s easy to play at 5-0. I could have played. That’s not the point. The point is in the bad moments. I knew what would happen in Kharkiv and today. I didn’t want to be presumptuous, but I knew it because they’ve done it for two seasons. I’m close to them. I saw after Norwich how they didn’t talk too much. They were sad and I liked that. On the coach and the plane they didn’t talk. That’s a good sign. They suffered and that is good

2019 09 24 Retrieve

[Taylor Harwood-Bellis: Man City’s homegrown defensive star already wowing Guardiola] One of the reasons for coming here is knowing how good they are working in the academy. For me, it’s amazing to see the young players and imagine that they can one day come and join us in the first team

[With Stones missing after the Nations League tournament with England, Taylor Harwood-Bellis looked a ready-made replacement with his long strides out of defence and confidence on the ball] I was impressed. I didn’t know him very well but in pre-season in China, Taylor was so good

2019 09 24b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola described Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis as exceptional human beings] We made a good solid performance against a team third in the Championship, we played really good. I am pleased a lot with Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis at the back, they helped us a lot. They combined, they suit each other perfectly and they have played in the academy every weekend. They are exceptional human beings with a good mentality. I am very pleased

2019 09 27 Retrieve

[Guardiola defends ‘exceptional’ Bernardo Silva from racism storm] We spoke many times about what happened in stadiums, regarding Bernardo I was incredibly clear. If the people believe Bernardo is this type of person they are completely wrong. They judge one joke, I judge three years with him. Bernardo, or anyone else in my squad, do this thing for a joke. Benjamin is like a brother to Bernardo, that is what I see every single day here. If someone feels bad for that tweet it can happen, but the people who judge Bernardo don’t know him. He’s an exceptional person. He likes to be involved in different situations. It [the picture] looked the same, it happens a thousand, million times with white people

[Having learned of the FA’s plan to look into the incident] I don’t know what is going to happen. They should put their focus on another issue because they don’t know which guy you are talking about. Bernardo is one of most lovely people I ever met in my life. He speaks four or five languages and that is the best way to understand how open-minded he is. And one of his best friends is Mendy. He’s like a brother to him. The image is not about the colour of the skin. He took a picture of Benjamin when he was young and he related it to this cartoon, which was quite similar for the image. If they want to do that and ask for Bernardo, I think he will be open to talk. But first you have to know exactly which person you are talking about. There are many situations with people, with white people, and you look at a cartoon and the face is quite similar as your face and you put it in there. I think the response from Mendy was clear after that. They are joking all the time. Maybe what I say as advice is to hide social media. If something happened, it would be a mistake. Bernardo is an exceptional person

2019 09 27b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has hailed Gabriel Jesus as an animal after the Brazil striker expressed frustration at his number of first-team starts for Manchester City] He’s passionate. I read that interview and it was perfect. It was incredibly respectful, like Gabriel is. No problem at all. Of course he wants to play. He is the number nine for Brazil. I said recently, he is maybe the only striker in the world at this level who has to have this mentality, a friendship with Sergio and all the team-mates. Every time he is on the pitch, if he plays one second, two minutes or 90 minutes, he plays like an animal. In every action he does his best. Not just Gabriel, all the players want to play all the games. It’s normal. It’s not a problem

[Man City are short of specialist cover in the heart of defence, following to injuries to Aymeric Laporte and John Stones on the back of Vincent Kompany’s departure] I knew [they were ready], it was not necessary for them to play against Preston to know it. Of course they are young, they are going to make mistakes like the old players make mistakes. Of course they are ready. They can train with us and play with us. If they were not ready they would not have played against Preston

2019 09 28 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has reiterated that the club will not be splashing out on a big signing in the next transfer window to help make the coach’s life easier, insisting he will have to work with what he has] That is not my business but in January we are not going to buy because we don’t have money to pay a huge amount in the summer so we cannot do it in winter. We are going to stick to the players we have, with [Taylor] Harwood-Bellis and Eric Garcia and with the new players in the academy. We have young, talented players and we can count on them. Vinny Kompany was an incredibly personality and he was incredibly helpful to me and the whole club, but he decided to go to Anderlecht and we have to move forward. That is what it is and so far, it has been perfect

[Guardiola was delighted with the way his side were able to get back to winning ways] [The reaction] is good, but we knew our game at Norwich wasn’t so bad. Sometimes in football, you lose games but the reaction was similar to the reaction in the last years, it was good. Winning 8-0 is exceptional, so it’s not normal. It was a weird game and you don’t have to take it like it’s what we are or what we expect. Five goals with the first five shots on target is not normal, it happens once a season. It happened last season against Chelsea at home [6-0 win] so we learn from every game and try to do it better. I know for some people, the result is all that matters. It usually matters because you can have a job for the next season, that’s why the results are important but what makes me realise who we are and where we are going for the future is the way we play. From the beginning of my career, I’m always concerned with the way we played. That will give us confidence to be strong as a team

2019 09 29 Retrieve

[Guardiola admits City cannot drop many points in title race] We knew Liverpool won again and the gap was eight points, so big. So, we won three points and it’s five [points] in September, with a lot of points to play for. We know which team we’re playing right now - they are seven victories in a row, champions of Europe and playing good football. This is our rival and we know we can’t drop too many points because last season they lost just one game. The season is long, we have to keep going and be there, maybe we can push them a little bit more and try to make the third Premier League in a row

[Ederson produced a couple of impressive second-half stops to help Man City on their way to a fourth win on the bounce in all competitions] Ederson saved two incredible chances at 2-1 and it was a good game of football. We were absolutely outstanding. At Goodison Park it’s always difficult - we started incredibly well as usual, we created chances and scored. After that we had a lot of problems to control out left side with Gylfi Sigurdsson, they had one more player there, we had a lot of problems. In the second half, except set-pieces and conceding free-kicks and long balls we played good

2019 09 30 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has dismissed the notion that Manchester City need to win the Champions League this season] Yeah, definitely [winning the Champions League is the next step for City] but sometimes it cannot be possible. Sometimes you take a few years, sometimes you take longer. Barcelona is my club in my heart and won their first one in 1992. Of course I will try or live the next ten months thinking it will be a disaster if I don’t win the Champions League. I want to win it but if I don’t, it will not change my life, I am not going to kill myself. In my first press conference, it was the same question, you are here to win the Champions League. It is impossible to arrive and do it without the feeling that we want to do it. We tried the first season, we tried the second season when we were up for four competitions

2019 09 30b Retrieve

[The City boss has had to reshuffle his squad after defenders John Stones and Aymeric Laporte were ruled out with long-term injuries, and says his team must come together to battle through the situation] It is a tough moment for the team, but this only makes us stronger for the next months. We have to be all together. It is not an excuse. We can’t give up in our challenge this year. We must keep going and fight in all the games. I think we have enough players to deal with this problem

2019 10 01 Retrieve

[Guardiola said of Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis ahead of Tuesday’s Group C clash with Dinamo Zagreb] They can play. There are moments when we can use them, no doubt about it.

Eric Garcia’s so smart, so intelligent. His physicality is not so, so strong, but he resolves the situation by thinking. I like to work with smart people, intelligent people. He is one of them. I can count on him. He has shown me an incredible personality

We want these players to stay here 10 years, 12 years, and make a career. There is a time when these young players will arrive. I promise you. The next step is for them

2019 10 01b Retrieve

[Guardiola had hoped to see the end of such fitness struggles, with De Bruyne considered to be a key man for the reigning Premier League champion] Kevin sometimes is a special player. He sees things others cannot see on the pitch, or even off the pitch. Sometimes he frustrates me when he loses simple balls. How can he lose it with his quality? But he is an incredibly talented player, with his vision up front and the quality of his shooting. With Kevin it depends on his mood. Sometimes it is low but when he is happy, he’s an incredible, fantastic player. We missed him a lot. We had an incredible season, winning four titles, but we missed him a lot. He’s a special player. I’m happy he is here

2019 10 02 Retrieve

[Man City boss Guardiola offers De Bruyne fitness update] It’s not serious, but today he could not play. We’ll see next Sunday. For the weekend, right now I don’t know. Maybe he can get fit. We are going to see if we can take a risk. I think after the international break he will be fit

[Sterling backed Foden for an England call-up after the teenager’s second Champions League goal] He deserves to play. Every time he plays I am unfair to him. I’m sorry. But there is David Silva, there is Kevin De Bruyne, there is [Ilkay] Gundogan, there is Bernardo Silva there is Rodri. I am so sorry. The best way to grow and grow is to play minutes. He is going to be an incredible player for us. We trust a lot in him. It is what it is

2019 10 02b Retrieve

[Guardiola hails IIlkay Gundogan as one of Manchester City’s best ever signings] You cannot believe how good he is. He is an exceptional player. He can play in different positions, with his work ethic. I missed him a lot in our first year here when after a few months an ACL ruled him out for more than six months. He is exceptional. He is one of the best signings in this club’s history

[Guardiola’s side ultimately opened the scoring in 66th minute after a Riyad Mahrez cross was bundled home by Raheem Sterling with the Citizen’s coach impressed by Dinamo Zagreb’s determined performance] We believe when you attack inside and put a ball wide and people arrive for the cross, that’s the best way to score a goal. It was really nice, but they defended so well. Even for the goal the defender was there. They were so good. I didn’t expect them to play so deep, because they didn’t have a shot on target, apart from one or two set pieces. But what they did in that part of the pitch was so good. They won duels and anticipated all the time. They deserve a lot of credit. That’s why it was an incredible battle

2019 10 02c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola praises Sterling’s desire but wants more improvement] I said many times, in a few years he will be a better player than today. His desire, the way he came in, he saw the first ball and attacked one against two. He was aggressive and the crowd said ‘wow’. Raheem is a player who is always there. He has this talent. He loves to score goals. On the crosses you always have that feeling

He said a few days ago that he missed chances against Everton but never was upset, was never thinking about bad mistakes. He was thinking about another [chance]. That is the point with Raheem. The feeling we had in the first season when we arrived here was he played good but it was like the goal … he didn’t care. Now, all the movements are there. [He gets] the ball and he is going to try and score. Still he can improve, in the finishing and the last decision. The pass to Phil was perfect. Commit, make a good decision, [using] the movement of Riyad [Mahrez] as well. It was good. But I still think he has a gap to improve and be even more clinical. The important thing is all the time he is there. That is the reason why this season and the previous season he has scored a lot of goals

2019 10 02d Retrieve

[Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva has been charged by the Football Association after the Portuguese posted a controversial tweet involving team-mate Benjamin Mendy in September. Pep Guardiola stating that the pair are best of friends and that the post was merely a joke] Bernardo, or anyone else in my squad, do this thing for a joke. Benjamin is like a brother to Bernardo, that is what I see every single day here. If someone feels bad for that tweet it can happen, but the people who judge Bernardo don’t know him. He’s an exceptional person

2019 10 04 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has ruled Kevin De Bruyne out of Sunday’s Premier League clash with Wolves as he continues to recover from a groin injury] Tomorrow he is not fit. Sometimes he’s not playing, one game at Norwich, sometimes sub, when he feels good, he’s good. After the international break he will be ready

[Kyle Walker was left out of Gareth Southgate’s England squad for the second time in a row] Kyle Walker, it is a big challenge for him to show the manager from England how good he is and that he is ready to be back. Our life in sport is about challenge, about duels, targets, and he has one in front of him in every single game to show how good he is to come back into the team. He came as an incredible, oustanding player and still is an outstanding player. Physicality, strong, fast, and we try to help him to be better since we were together.

We ask him many times ‘don’t attack from wide but from inside’, yes, but as player he can do everything. The opinion of Gareth Southgate, he made the selection, he had a huge selection of players to select [from], he decided the last two times and Kyle respects it, I respect it. Gareth does what he does for the best of the national team in England. It’s a big challenge for Kyle to show how him good he is. My opinion will not change because he’s not in the national team, and neither will Gareth 9484afd5836d307b314a404d745a9a68… he remains an incredible full-back

[On Walker’s direct rival for the right-back berth, Joao Cancelo] In the beginning at Preston Joao Cancelo made a step forward and in the last game he was good too. He arrived late and not in pre-season. He came after that, so it was different for him after what he did at his previous team [Juventus]. But he’s getting better, with the ball there is no doubt, without the ball, he is starting to understand what we want from him

2019 10 04b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has predicted his outstanding right-back Kyle Walker will rise to the challenge after losing his place in the England squad] Kyle, it’s a big challenge for him to show the manager from England how good he is and ready to come back. In our sports life always it’s about challenge, deals, targets. He has one in front of him in every single game to show how good he is and come back in the national team. He came as an incredible, outstanding player and he still is, physicality strong and fast, we try to help him since we’re together to be a better player. We ask him many times to attack from wide or inside; Kyle Walker is a player who can do everything. But the opinion is of Gareth the manager, I’m not here to … he makes a decision to select and he decided the last two times. I respect it, Kyle respects it, Gareth does what he does for the national team. It’s a challenge for Kyle to show how good he is. My opinion doesn’t change whether he’s in or not, he remains an incredible full-back

[Guardiola said of Joao Cancelo] Against Preston Joao Cancelo made a step forward with all the kids, last game really good too. Because he arrived late, not in pre-season, things we work on he was not there, it was different to his previous team so we need time. But he’s getting better with and without the ball. He’s understanding what we want and he played well in the last two games. Kyle I don’t have doubts about, Danilo played a couple of games last season. We cannot play with just one player. We survived with one [left-sided] full-back with Fabian Delph and Alex Zinchenko so we need this player to move forward, let Kyle rest and sometimes Joao plays to take his position. It is what it is

2019 10 05 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has said the need to win trophies at Manchester City makes it difficult for young players to force their way into his first team] This team needs to win titles and prizes and the process for the young players needs time and the best way is step by step. But the demand from the club [is] not winning the Champions League but being there every time, in all competitions and for that [we] need the [senior] players we have. When they are talented, they will play. But at the same time, we have to compete every day to fight with the best in England and Europe. For that we need the David Silvas, Kevin De Bruynes, Sergio Agueros and Fernandinhos. But if the basis of the team is young, it is not possible

[He continues to insist the 19-year-old Foden will play a part] I didn’t speak with him so I don’t know. Hopefully. I don’t see the age. If the player wants to come, they will, if they don’t, they will not. Everyone knows exactly what my opinion of Phil Foden is. He will play a lot this season and the next seasons

2019 10 06 Retrieve

[Guardiola admits to ‘bad day’ for nervous Man City as Liverpool are handed ‘big’ lead] We started decent, quite well but conceded counter-attacks. We were not at our best and when you concede a fast counter-attack, we had chances to score but it was a bad day and lost the game. We did not make good process, we had problems in that sense. We are a team that plays a specific way but it is a bad day, that happens sometimes. When you win games, you think about the other one. Now we have the international break, then can come back and go to the other games

It was not our best day. We started good, we wanted to be patient with our game because we know how good they defend. We let them run twice, got nervous a little bit and our process to create chances was not good. We had the problems on the counter-attack in the end and it was a bad day. They defend. They play long balls and defend, they then go on the counter. It is physical team, a strong team so know how good they are. We know their qualities and we knew how they scored the goals. We were not organised, lost balls in positions we could not lose them in. We had two chances, one onto the crossbar and with Bernardo Silva. They did really well. We are going to come back again to try

[They are going to have to do likewise in 2019-20 if a hat-trick of top-flight crowns is to be secured] The distance is big, Liverpool have not dropped points. Now is the time to come back. The results will dictate the situation but we are in October and there’s a long way to go

[Guardiola said of his right-back] Kyle Walker did not feel good, he did not train well after an infection and we had to change him

2019 10 07 Retrieve

[Guardiola adamant that title race is still on] Come on guys, there are a lot of games to go. We lost to a good team, who were really organised, so strong in the air and so fast in the counter attack. I know these guys [his players]. Still they are incredibly involved and can do it. What happened, happened. Most of the teams who won [the Premier League] in the past, the year after, don’t win. Today, we were not at our usual level. The previous games were good, but the distance is big. I know that. Liverpool is not dropping points. But we are in October; there is still a lot of games and competitions

[Guardiola defended the pair, though, and stated they were not helped by the carelessness of the players in front of them] They were quite good. They suffered because we lost the position in front of them. No central defenders can defend the kind of balls we lose there. They were good

2019 10 16 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola gave his own statement, with the 48-year-old a vocal supporter of the Catalan movement] The leaders condemned today (Monday) represent the majority of political parties in Catalonia. Spain lives in an authoritarian drift in which anti-terrorist laws are used to prosecute dissent. This fight won’t stop until the repression stops and we find a peaceful and democratic solution

2019 10 18 Retrieve

[Guardiola says Manchester City can get past ‘unstoppable’ Liverpool side and win Premier League] I don’t believe in that kind of thing, every season is different. In sport the only way to do well is to stay in the present. I’m not setting any points targets or objectives at this stage. In April and May you can do that but what we are facing is an opponent who are unstoppable right now. Liverpool are champions of Europe and haven’t lost once in eight games. We’ll just have to try and do what we can, we have 50 games left in all competitions. I’m not concerned about being the guy who thinks he’s going to win every Premier League for the rest of his life.

Of course, I still want to win, and I still believe we are contenders, but there is a long way to go and all sorts of dynamics, momentums and injuries still to happen. If we don’t win I will say congratulations to the team that does. What Liverpool are doing is fantastic but Chelsea and Arsenal are also getting better. The level is rising all the time

[If City are to overhaul Liverpool the festive period is sure to be vital] The broadcasters are the bosses, it is not about us. We have lots of meetings with people but nothing changes. The system does not protect the players. All I can do between the two games (Wolves away on December 27 and Sheffield United at home on December 29) is to tell my players to get inside the fridge

2019 10 19 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola’s fourth-season syndrome: Are Man City set to suffer same fate as Barcelona?] The day I see the light go out in my players’ eyes, I’ll know it’s time to go

[His side came back from seven points behind last season but Guardiola admits that doesn’t mean it is going to happen again] I don’t believe in these kind of things - it happened last season, [therefore] it’s going to happen this season. What I believe is playing better and better and better. The reason why we didn’t play quite good against Wolves in some moments, that is only my worry. This week I looked at what we have done, what is my feeling about the team, what is my feeling about the way we’ve played against this system and the other ones, what we have to do. I’m only concerned about that. I don’t anticipate my future - I’m going to lose this game or win. You don’t live if you think about that. Sport is present, stay in the present and prepare

[Liverpool’s perfect form won’t last all season but City must stay within touching distance] We have 50 games in all competitions. We have to play to enjoy, have fun and we will see. I’m not the guy who thinks he’s going to win all titles we are going to play and all the Premier Leagues for the rest of my life

2019 10 19b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has a plan to make sure his Manchester City players cope with playing twice in less than 48 hours in December] Go home, open the fridge and get inside

[Asked what he can do to combat such a quick turnaround between travelling to Molineux and hosting the Blades before the turn of the year] Players to the fridge. I’m not joking. Go home, open the fridge and get inside for 48 hours. See you at the Etihad Stadium [on December 29]. When I open the fridge to make an omelette, maybe I can talk with my players. But apart from that, no way. It happened in my first season here. I think we played on December 31 at Anfield and then at home against Burnley [on January 2]

It’s difficult. In some games we could win but we didn’t win. Our mistakes punished us a lot. During the season there are ups and downs. We try to get better and improve. From tomorrow [Saturday] and in the Champions League, we try to make an incredible step forward, to win the game against Atalanta [on Tuesday], then in February Laporte will be back, most of the players will be back. We will see what happens in the later stages. Normally, when you win what we have won the last two seasons and you arrive in March and April being there, after that it’s more difficult to drop points. But, in the earliest stages of the season, sometimes it’s normal

2019 10 19c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says his side were not clinical enough against Crystal Palace despite coming away with a 2-0 victory at Selhurst Park on Saturday] As always good, my team is always ready. We played good, created a lot of chances. They are always so strong for the second ball. Unfortunately we could not convert the enough chances we had but it was an important three points after the international break. They were I think one point below, so they are having an incredible season. Hopefully we can start from here and continue our good performance. Their keeper made a lot of saves but hopefully we can be more clinical in the future. But a good result

Thank you so much for their effort because it is not their position. Our build-up was quicker and both were incredible, especially Rodri who did not train one day in that position. It is another option we have but we will see. We have a lot of midfielders who have a lot of quality. Joao (Cancelo) today played so good and Benjamin (Mendy) played incredibly well after a long time injured. Against Zaha too, it is not easy to control him. The back four responded well I think

2019 10 19d Retrieve

[Guardiola slams VAR for believing Man City players are diving] It’s diving. It’s diving, it’s diving. Every weekend it is always diving. [Like at] Bournemouth. But against Tottenham it was hands, real hands in the 94th minute. It’s diving again. Of course, I am [frustrated]. Next question

[With Nicolas Otamendi injured and John Stones not fit enough to start, Guardiola named midfielders Fernandinho and Rodri as his centre-back pairing] Thank you so much to both of them. It is not easy playing in different positions against the strikers Palace have; Zaha, Jordan Ayew, Christian Benteke and Andros Townsend at the end, they did really well

[Guardiola elected to start Jesus over Sergio Aguero, with the Brazilian’s goal taking him onto 50 for City] I’m not going to talk about how important Sergio is for our club, he is so important. Gabriel, he came back from Brazil, he had rhythm. Sergio was 10 days away without training, but both are important. When Sergio plays he is at a good level and when Gabriel plays he is at a good level, after that I will take a decision

2019 10 20 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Gabriel Jesus is fighting like an animal to become Manchester City’s first-choice striker] Competing with Sergio Aguero is maybe the most difficult thing. Sergio is a legend, an outrageous player - amazing. He is so calm. [Jesus] is a real competitor - he accepts the decisions and every session he fights like an animal. His mentality means he’ll always have success. He is hungry, he wants to become an important striker around the world. We are lucky to have him

He is the No.9 for Brazil so he is an incredible player. I thought the club bought an incredible young player at an incredible price - one of their best signings. He fights with Sergio and Sergio fights with him for one position. It’s good. Sometimes I need Sergio for many things and sometimes I need Gabriel. The reason [he started] is because I thought Gabriel was in that rhythm after the games with the national team. I don’t know what is going to happen in the next game

Of course he is still young and can improve. The last action … like when he has to pass to Kevin, he has to do it. But he is so young. We missed a lot of chances. We have to be clinical. The people say the Champions League [is our] target, we still are not ready. We create a lot and don’t concede but can improve. We’ve scored a lot over the last two seasons and I don’t have doubts about that but we have to keep going

2019 10 20b Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has called on his side to be more clinical] The people say about the Champions League, that target. We still are not ready. We create a lot, don’t concede, but can improve. We’ve scored a lot over the last two seasons and I don’t have doubts about that, but we have to keep going, work on that. We missed a lot of chances and also lost a lot of chances in the box [against Palace]. We have to be clinical

[Man City also deployed an experimental backline against Palace with midfielders Fernandinho and Rodri converted to centre-backs] It’s an option - Rodri can play there. When we decide to do it we’ll have more midfield players on the pitch and we did it. I don’t know what is going to happen in the future but he convinced me as an alternative

2019 10 21 Retrieve

[Pep’s choice for Barcelona? Why River idol Marcelo Gallardo would be perfect man to succeed Valverde] I cannot understand how Gallardo is not nominated among the best coaches in the world, not just this year, but for so long. What Gallardo has done at River Plate is incredible, with regards to results and delivering consistently year after year. The players leave, but he is still there. There are things I cannot explain, in the lists of coach of the year he is never there, it seems only Europe has a place in the world. I hope one day I can face one of his teams, it would be great

2019 10 22 Retrieve

[A loan move or the Champions League? Why Foden may benefit more from staying at Man City] Everyone knows exactly what my opinion of Phil Foden is. He will play a lot this season and the next seasons. […] Phil is the most talented player I have ever seen in my career as a manager

2019 10 23 Retrieve

[Guardiola gives Phil Foden full backing despite Champions League red card] He doesn’t need to prove anything to me. He would not be here with us. I was the guy who said to him in the academy come here to play with us. There is nobody who trusts Phil more than me. I’m the boss, I decide [who plays]. We thought it was a game he would have more opportunities to run, on the counter-attack. Phil has these qualities to be box-to-box, at speed. That was the reason why he played, a tactical decision. He’s a young guy, still a lot to improve. But it is important. Last season in one of the biggest games we had he played against Tottenham, he played so good and today as well. Every minute he plays, more experience for him for his future. He played at a high level

[Guardiola did, however, add Foden still has plenty to learn, acknowledging his frustration at the midfielder’s red card] He will learn. Never fine for the player [to get sent off], unless it is for a stupid thing not something that is part of the game. He will know after one yellow card you have to be a bit more careful. There are things still where his is far away from David Silva, far away from Ilkay Gundogan and far away from Kevin De Bruyne. He has to live this situation with a yellow card and be careful

[There will be no punishment from Guardiola for Foden’s indiscipline, though] Absolutely, I will not fine him. Maybe I have to pay him for how well he played

2019 10 23b Retrieve

[Guardiola however was quick to deflect any role he’s played in Sterling’s rise and stressed he has the potential to become even better] The credit is just for him. All of the credit. He can be better but he is perfect. His physicality, he is strong, he could play a game the day after a game, his regeneration is so strong. He is an extraordinary player. He can play both sides, defensively he helps us a lot. He is an incredible player. It depends on him but he has the desire to do better

2019 10 23c Retrieve

[Guardiola sweating over Rodri injury outcome as he fears Man City star could be out for a month] Tomorrow [Wednesday] we will know. Hopefully [Rodri will be out] between 10 days if it is not broken [torn]. If it is broken, it will be three weeks or one month. It is hamstring, it looks like. When a guy runs and puts his hand in the hamstring position, it is a hamstring

2019 10 23d Retrieve

[Former Barcelona player and manager Pep Guardiola has called for dialogue to resolve the issues of Catalunya] We need Europe to solve it. People don’t trust each other too much. My statement was clear, just sit in and talk, we have this ability to do that, to sit and talk and try to solve it

2019 10 24 Retrieve

[Bernardo Silva has been a huge success following his switch to City and was this week nominated for the Ballon d’Or] I’ve never once seen him in a bad mood, even when he’s not playing much. I can’t tell you how important it is to have players like him in the dressing room. Bernardo’s that kind of guy, who always seems to be in the right frame of mind. In that sense he’s quite unusual. He’s going to be around for a long time to come and, as long as I’m in charge, Bernardo’s going nowhere

2019 10 25 Retrieve

[Manchester City full-back Oleksandr Zinchenko will be out for up to five weeks after undergoing knee surgery in Barcelona] Zinchenko had contact with the knee and felt something in the bone. He has to stop for four or five weeks. He had (surgery) to clean the knee

2019 10 25b Retrieve

[Quizzed on the South American ahead of a Premier League reunion on Saturday] Douglas Luiz would be here if a work permit were possible, if the Premier League said it would be possible, but now he is at Aston Villa. We have an option to get him back but sometimes life is like this. We wanted him because last season we had problems in that position because we didn’t buy a holding midfielder. We wanted him before so we thought about it but the rules with the work permit meant it was not possible. I thought he would be here with the pre-season he played last year in the States, he was really good. I think he had the quality to play with us but he could not do it. The talent is always there, we’ll see at the end of the season what his level is but the quality is always there

2019 10 25c Retrieve

[Douglas Luiz back at Man City to finally show what he can do] It was especially [frustrating] for Douglas Luiz. Because of the work permit, it was not allowed. We paid money to have him but the rules say he doesn’t have enough quality to play here in England. So he could not play.

[And City will activate it if they are sufficiently impressed with his performances, just as they did with Spanish left-back Angelino in the summer] We have an option to get him back but sometimes life is like this. We wanted him because last season we had problems in that position because we didn’t buy a holding midfielder. We wanted him before so we thought about it, but the rules with the work permit meant it was not possible. I thought he would be here with the pre-season he played last year in the States, he was really good. I think he had the quality to play with us but he could not do it. The talent is always there. We’ll see at the end of the season what his level is but the quality is always there

[Unfortunately for Luiz, he never got the opportunity to fully show Guardiola what he was capable of] I don’t know, it’s hypothetical. Now he’s playing for Aston Villa. I would say that if he had got a work permit two years ago that it would be possible. Now it’s fantasy

2019 10 25d Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola says he is worried about a lack of defensive cover at the Premier League champions as an injury crisis continues] When I’m thinking after the international break, November, December, January, February - yes I’m a little bit concerned because in a few positions we don’t have enough players. January window we are not going, well I think we are not going to buy. The club didn’t introduce me to the players they thought could help us so, without that, it’s not going to happen. Our need is not just for six months, it’s for a long time and the important players will not be sold. We are going to stay all the season, I think, with all the players we have right now

[Guardiola can look to Benjamin Mendy to play more after the France international’s comeback in recent weeks] He played 90 minutes against Crystal Palace and 70-75 minutes in an incredibly demanding game against Atalanta and he is not injured. I think it is coming if he can play regularly. With games he can get to his best level. He’s not at the level we believe he can be, but that’s normal after two seasons out. He needs time. Hopefully he can be fit. If he’s fit, he can train every day, it’s going to happen

2019 10 26 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says a relegation battle, rather than a title tussle, awaits his Manchester City side if they repeat their first-half performance against Aston Villa] Six days ago we were eight points, now we are three. I am not concerned about the table. I am concerned about the way we played. If we play the level we played in the second half we can be there at the end of the season I am sure of that. If we play the way we did in the first half, we will be in the relegation positions far away from the leaders of the table. That is my view. Not just this season but all the time. The first half we play football but not in the way we should play. The second half we were better, an early goal in the second half helped us and we played in the way we normally are but we have to try to play 90 minutes and not just 45

[Pressed further on the opening 45 minutes and why his side were so flat] Normally we use a word aggressive. I like to use this word aggressive when you have the ball. Raheem [Sterling] was the only player who was aggressive with the ball in the first half. In the second half we imitated him. He showed us the way we have to play and it was much better. The aggression is how you make movements, making the build-up quicker, how you give the pass, how you attack, how you arrive with the ball and be aggressive with the ball. We were not aggressive in the first half and in the second half it happened

[Guardiola is delighted to see Sterling ignoring the hype which continues to build around him] What I like the most about Raheem was one thing: after scoring three goals against Atalanta, making an assist and winning a penalty, and being involved in the final third, everybody in the media says how good you are, normally the next game you play a little like: ‘Look how good I am’. And it was completely the opposite. Look at Phil Foden, he played 25 minutes like it was the last 15 minutes of his life. That is our strength as a team in the last years together. Every single game, every three days. Today Raheem has played all the minutes, I am so proud of him

2019 10 26b Retrieve

[Guardiola needs the rest of his squad to follow Sterling’s example] We always use the word ‘aggressive’, to be aggressive when you don’t have the ball. But I like to use this word aggressive when you have the ball. The aggression is there in how you make movements, making the build-up quicker, how you give the pass, how you attack, how you arrive with the ball; you have to be aggressive with the ball. Raheem was the only player who was aggressive with the ball in the first half. In the second half, we imitated him. He showed us the way we have to play and it was much better

[As Guardiola pointed out, though, it was usually impressive that Sterling didn’t rest on his laurels after his heroics in midweek] He is consistent. What I like the most about Raheem today was one thing: after scoring three goals against Atalanta, making an assist and winning a penalty, and being constantly involved in the final third, everybody in the media says how good you are. Normally the next game you play a little like: ‘Look how good I am!’. But it was completely the opposite with Raheem. [He delivers in] every single game, every three days. I am so proud of him.

2019 10 26c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes it would be too expensive for Manchester City to sign Jack Grealish from Aston Villa after the midfielder starred in his side’s 3-0 defeat at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday] He [Grealish] is an incredible, incredible player - top player. I am happy for the fact he is an Aston Villa player and he got offers to move on but decided to stay there in the Championship. I like that they were promoted to the Premier League and he defended his club. He is a talented player - fast in the final third, passes, always creates something. He’s an exceptional player but too expensive for Manchester City!

[Guardiola hasn’t held back in criticising his side this campaign and once again took aim at their first-half performance on Saturday] We played a good 45 minutes, not the other ones. Respect and credit to Aston Villa. The first half we play football but not in the way we should play. The second half we were better, an early goal in the second half helped us and we played in the way we normally are but we have to try to play 90 minutes and not just 45.

2019 10 27 Retrieve

[Guardiola wishes Aymeric Laporte and everybody were back for Manchester City] I wish we had Laporte and everyone else come back. I hate one word which is ‘complain’. Normally when I say something not nice it is after a victory, never have I said it after a defeat. We were punished in some defeats and I shut my mouth. I would prefer to be all together

[Fernandinho’s suspension will see him miss Tuesday’s Carabao Cup game against Southampton on Tuesday] We have Academy [players], other solutions. When the spirit is correct, when you want to help you will always get through [the difficult moment]. The problem is for the short time you can handle it, but for a long time I do not know. Of course, against top teams when you don’t have the players who play in their own position I don’t know what happens. But before it is going to happen I am not going to say ‘it is a disaster’. The ideal situation does not exist in football, especially over one long season.

[The Saints went down to a record defeat in getting trounced 9-0 by Leicester but Guardiola doesn’t expect that result to carry over into the next two matches] The manager will be sad for one night but after that they have to move forward. The players are professional, they are going to try and do their best. I am not going to judge Southampton or prepare for Southampton games based on a bad result against Leicester

2019 10 28 Retrieve

[Former Barcelona head coach Pep Guardiola has said that, as soon as he saw Lionel Messi play for the first time, he knew the club would win everything] I had already been told by someone from the squad that there was a very good player in the squad. They told me that he was very young but scored many goals and he was very good. I did not know him and one day I saw him and his father at a Nike store. I saw him, he looked small and shy and I thought: ‘Is this one as good as they say?’ We started pre-season in Scotland, we won 6-1, 5-0 and he would score three goals a game for you. I thought that, with him, we would win everything

[Guardiola also praised the culture of the squad he coached at Barcelona] There was not much time to, but I enjoyed the process of building the team; seeing that the changes we made worked and everything was flowing; how they were brought together, the chemistry, the respect. They were a group of friends who went out to dinner often; a group that knew how to move forward in moments of difficulty. All this was very good, but the importance of leading such a big club as Barca means that you do not have much time to enjoy it. The relationship that we have with those who formed part of that group is insurmountable. There are no championships or world titles that can compensate. We gave each other a lot. But there is a moment, due to the natural process of time, that things end

2019 10 30 Retrieve

[Guardiola impressed by Manchester City youngsters Eric Garcia and Tommy Doyle in win against Southampton] Eric Garcia has once again played a high level, like has this season and last season in the Carabao Cup. He didn’t make one mistake. Tommy, as well, played well in a position that isn’t his natural his position. We had just one holding midfielder available - Ilkay Gundogan - and he’s played a lot of games. I thought he played really well. Congratulations on his debut. We have Fernandinho who can play there but he is playing centre-back and was suspended. That’s why Tommy played. I didn’t have another alternative. He was with us in pre-season and I’ve seen him in the academy. I didn’t have any doubts he would play a good level

[Success in the Carabao Cup has provided City with a springboard to win further trophies in the previous two campaigns] This competition is good to move the team on. We played seriously; the quality of our passing was high. It’s not easy to attack the system Southampton had, with eight players back and fast players up front. It was a good game and we go through to the quarter-finals. You cannot win four titles in one season when you don’t play games so seriously. For the players who didn’t play the last games it’s good for me to see the rhythm they have and I was happy with what I saw

2019 10 30b Retrieve

[Guardiola: Messi’s ‘short bursts of effort’ help Barcelona star perform like a 20-year-old in his side’s 5-1 demolition of Real Valladolid on Tuesday night] One day Messi will retire and Barca will cope with that. What needs to be prepared is the space for the statue, the way to pay tribute to him like [Laszlo] Kubala or Johan [Cruyff], and I’ve no doubt they’ll find it. Stars need to run like anyone else, if not the team can’t cope, you need to convince them to run. Sometimes, you say to them ‘I won’t make you run 40 metres like the 20-year-old athlete in the team, but give me a reason not to run’. If someone doesn’t run, but scores three goals every game I can buy that, but nobody scores three goals a game, only Messi comes close. Right now, you need to ask Messi to make short bursts of effort. He can’t run for the sake of running, no way. If Leo ran like he ran in his first season with me he’d be injured every three months. Managing legends of 30 and above is the hardest thing for a coach

There are great coaches who have won nothing because they didn’t have Messi. I was lucky enough to have him, and Xavi and Andres Iniesta and Dani Alves and Gerard Pique. And what’s more, at the perfect age. There is not one player who doesn’t think about defending at all, but you have to adapt to the qualities of your players. When Barcelona played better it was with [Michael] Laudrup at false nine and then Messi. I tried it at Bayern Munich, but there wasn’t a player who could dribble past three players and then score, so we had to look for alternatives

2019 10 30c Retrieve

[Guardiola backs Xavi for Barcelona coaching job: Sooner or later, it’ll happen] Sooner or later it will happen. He is still very young, but it will happen. He understands football and has a lot of passion and dedication. He is brave and says things very clearly

[Guardiola has spoken of the hard work that he put in to get Barcelona firing when he first took charge] I had a great time. Between matches there wasn’t much time to enjoy, but during the process of building the team I saw that the changes worked, and everything was flowing. I saw the behaviour amongst the players; the chemistry that grew and their respect for the shirt. It was interesting to know how they distributed wages, and everything was going well

2019 10 31 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola’s reaction as reports of Rabbi Matondo’s potential departure began to emerge] He’s an incredibly fast and young talent, I know how good he is. This club is working so good. All the players in the academy, we trust them. If they want to be patient and stay; if they want to leave, they leave

2019 11 01 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola doesn’t have a straight choice between giving youth a chance and winning trophies] We have to compete every single day to fight with the best teams in England and Europe, and for that we need David Silvas and Kevin De Bruynes and Sergio Agueros and Fernandinhos and all these type of players. With the young, young, young players you cannot do it. The young players can be a help for the other ones but, if the basis is young, it is not possible

2019 11 01b Retrieve

[Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola offered sympathy to beleaguered Arsenal captain Granit Xhaka following his confrontation with Gunners fans] We have to respect our supporters. But it is not easy for the players sometimes. I understand Xhaka, the emotions, the moment. I don’t know what’s going on inside, but maybe I’m not the right man to say, because sometimes I cannot control my emotions, but you have to try it. At the end, it’s just a game, to have fun, to do their best, and I’m sure all the players, Xhaka included, do their absolute best for Arsenal, do the best for his mates and for winning games. He is the captain because he has something special in the locker room. It’s happened because sometimes you lose control. It will be forgotten, they’ll move forward and hopefully the fans can forgive Xhaka and he can show what an incredible player he is

2019 11 01c Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola backed Klopp’s stance on fixture congestion and called on the relevant governing bodies to do more to protect players] I completely agree. How do we pay bigger squads? We need less fixtures, less competitions, more recovery. We play [December] 27 or 29 in winter time. In UEFA meetings, always they talk about it. I’m with Jurgen when he makes these kind of statements about too many games

2019 11 01d Retrieve

[Guardiola said when Schweinsteiger joined Menchester United] He is a top, top player. Unfortunately, during the last three years he was never in good condition

2019 11 01e Retrieve

[Guardiola hails ‘intelligent’ Gundogan as one of Europe’s best] He is such an intelligent player. That’s one of the qualities I appreciate the most, intelligence - the players who understand everything that happens during the game and solve it as quick as possible. He can play in many roles. He can play close to the box as the guy who scores the goals. He has that personality, especially in that position. As [a] holding midfielder, I didn’t expect he would be so consistent in that role, defending that position, but he is. He is an exceptional player. He is one of Europe’s best, in fact

[Guardiola admitted that he hadn’t thought to use Gundogan in the anchor midfield role until last season] Sometimes it happens when you don’t have alternatives. Sometimes when Ferna couldn’t play, I used other players. I didn’t use [Gundogan] because I didn’t realise. Look how wrong I was! After, when I didn’t have an alternative in that position, I played him and said ‘wow’, how aggressive he is without the ball and knows the movements he has to do. He is not a typical midfielder, but we need quality on the ball, not just defending. We didn’t have any doubts about his talent with the ball. Last season, when Ferna was injured more than usual, he played there and was outstanding, in all aspects of the game

2019 11 02 Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola sought to ramp up the tension ahead of a potentially decisive Premier League clash next weekend by calling out Liverpool star Sadio Mane for diving] Sometimes [Mane] is diving, sometimes he has this talent to score incredible goals in the last minute. He’s a talent. Another close Liverpool win? If it’s one time, two times, ‘we were lucky, we were lucky’, but it happened in the last two seasons many, many times - they have a special character to do that. We look at ourselves, we know which team we face, I think they have won 10 and drawn one … Next week we go to Anfield to try to play them.

[Turning back to his own team, Pep insisted that the match was more comfortable than the rather tight scoreline suggested] We played incredible from the first minute until the end. We created an incredible amount of chances. We were pressured but we did it. We kept our cool and we were patient. We know we will always get chances, it was important that we stayed calm ahead. I told them at half-time to keep going for it, to keep attacking. It is the only way. There was no space, it was almost impossible but we did it and that is why I am delighted

2019 11 02b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Messi] I had already been told by someone from the squad that there was a very good player in the squad. They told me that he was very young but scored many goals and he was very good. I saw him, he looked small and shy and I thought: ‘Is this one as good as they say?’ We started pre-season in Scotland, we won 6-1, 5-0 and he would score three goals a game for you. I thought that, with him, we would win everything

2019 11 03 Retrieve

[Guardiola and Man City not matching the brilliance of the past two seasons] I knew the Southampton players would have pride. They suffered against Leicester, they are human beings and I knew they would not want anything like that to happen again under any circumstances. They wanted to win the duels, defend their goal by beating aggressive. We knew it. A big compliment to my team. It was not easy and we did it.

[Liverpool’s ability to keep winning games late on means City can’t afford many more slip-ups] When we win, Liverpool still win. When they win many games in the last minute, it is because of special character. The first season we won the treble, we won four or five games in the last minute

[Bernardo Silva’s radar was also off while Raheem Sterling and Ilkay Gunodgan were crowded out] There was no space in the penalty area, my friend. We had to be patient, second ball, crosses. We needed more people in the box and, in the second half, Gabriel Jesus did that

2019 11 03b Retrieve

[Guardiola won’t rest Man City players in Champions League ahead of Liverpool match] Do you think we can win four titles in one season if we prioritise games? We’re going to play with the best team possible to win at Atalanta and after we go to Anfield. Nobody can assure me that if we don’t do what we have to do at Atalanta then we are going to make a better performance against Liverpool. The best way to face Atalanta is the way we played [against Southampton] and the best way to go to Anfield is to play a good game against Atalanta, who have been fighting with the top clubs in Italy for the last two or three seasons. That is the point. They can score four, five six goals every game so we are going to play with what we believe is the best team considering the regeneration, the opponents and the way they play, to make a good performance and qualify for the next stage of the Champions League

[Klopp’s side have dropped just two points all season but Guardiola says that doesn’t mean Sunday’s game is a must-win if they are to maintain a title challenge] We are going to try but I don’t think [we have to win]. How many centuries have they not lost at Anfield? We will see. They beat Aston Villa in the last minutes - so there are a lot of games to play. Many things are going to happen and there are a lot of games to play.

2019 11 04 Retrieve

[Guardiola speaking after both City and Liverpool pulled off late Premier League comebacks at the weekend] Sometimes Sadio Mane is diving. Sometimes he has this talent to score incredible goals in the last minute. He’s a talent

2019 11 05 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola admitted that he may have been wrong to hint that Sadio Mane was a diver as he admitted that Liverpool’s late-game heroics come down to skill, not luck] My son and my daughter always when Liverpool win in the last minutes say Liverpool are lucky. I tell them not. What Liverpool has done this season and last season many times is because they have this incredible quality to fight until the end. That’s why I said to my players - not just my son and daughter- that it is not lucky. Sometimes at 94 against Leicester with the penalty, it was like ‘wow’. That was the intention for my comment but it was far from my intention to say that Sadio Mane is that type of player. Even with that, the ref and the VAR said penalty. Maybe I was wrong to think it wasn’t a penalty

[Asked for his thoughts on what Klopp had to say, though, Guardiola said that he wasn’t even aware of Klopp’s comments] I don’t know. I didn’t listen to what he said

2019 11 06 Retrieve

[Asked on Tuesday what he thought of Klopp’s opinion that Guardiola thinks about Liverpool too much] I don’t know. I didn’t listen to what he said

[Questioned about tactical fouling, he echoed Klopp by saying] No comment on that. I don’t put oil in the fire

[Guardiola meanwhile insisted the talk on Mane’s diving had come from a long answer praising the league leaders and their never-ending will to win. And he added that he was unsure about an injury-time penalty awarded in their late win at Leicester when Mane fell under a challenge from Marc Albrighton] My son and my daughter always when Liverpool win in the last minutes say Liverpool are lucky. I tell them not. What Liverpool has done this season and last season many times is because they have this incredible quality to fight until the end. That’s why I said to my players - not just my son and daughter - that it is not lucky. Sometimes, at ‘94 against Leicester with the penalty, it was like ‘wow’. That was the intention for my comment but it was far from my intention to say that Sadio Mane is that type of player. Even with that, the ref and the VAR said penalty. Maybe I was wrong to think it wasn’t a penalty

2019 11 06b Retrieve

[Ederson in doubt for Liverpool meeting as Man City goalkeeper replaced at half-time in Atalanta clash] I don’t know right now - it’s a muscular problem. It was not big but to avoid risk. He didn’t feel comfortable in the last minutes and that’s why we decided to make a substitution

2019 11 06c Retrieve

[Guardiola chose to downplay his original words before City’s game with Atalanta in Milan] Jurgen said he knows Sadio better than me. And I have an incredible respect and the message in football is always try to be like this, always positive and attractive. Hopefully I can clarify everything for Jurgen

I think it’s a bit clever from him to get the attention of the referee but I will just play my football like I’m always doing. I don’t pay attention to what he’s saying because it’s part of football. It doesn’t make anything for me. Even though I saw him commenting about it, what he said, for me, I think it’s positive!

2019 11 06d Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has refused to rule out a move to Serie A in the future] Maybe. Possibly, yes. I had a great time in Italy, though I’m fine in England right now. But maybe. I’m still not that old, let’s see

[Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri eventually took the role, and Guardiola made it clear to reporters that any story linking him with a move to Turin was false] You had the wrong information. You had to do your job as a journalist better

2019 11 07 Retrieve

[Guardiola fired the first shots in the media battle last weekend, talking about the special talent of Jurgen Klopp’s side, and in particular Sadio Mane] Sometimes he is diving, sometimes he has this talent to score incredible goals in the last minute

2019 11 08 Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has confirmed that goalkeeper Ederson will miss a huge Premier League encounter against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday through injury] Ederson is not able to play. I don’t know how long he will be out for. Sunday, he cannot play. We have another top keeper. Claudio Bravo can do it, too. We won the Carabao Cup thanks to Claudio. He’s an exceptional keeper. Why should I doubt any player in my team? Why do you ask these questions? You have to respect this guy, he has won trophies and the Copa America. In his first season, the team was not at the top level

2019 11 08b Retrieve

[Manchester City head coach Pep Guardiola described Premier League title rivals Liverpool as ‘probably the best team in the world right now’ ahead of their crunch Premier League clash on Sunday] As a manager, I said last season when we won the league, they’re the best contender I ever faced in my career to win this league. It was the biggest achievement, or one of the biggest achievements, as a club. It remains the same. Probably right now they’re the strongest team in the world. They are an exceptional team. Of course, the history is there for itself. It’s something special, I think more for the quality of the team of what they do, quality of players they have, quality of manager they have, I believe more in that, in the team, than the scenario [atmosphere at Liverpool]. Right now it’s [Anfield] one of the toughest ones, right now in Europe it’s the toughest stadiums to go there

I don’t know to be honest, I think in November it never ends. I think we have a lot of games still to play. My experience in sport is you have to play until the end, are we going to win Champions League? Your favourite question! I don’t know the answer. They lost one game last season, this season they are unbeaten, so I think they won’t lose many, but the season is long

[It was put to Guardiola that his rivalry with Klopp could potentially stand up to the one between legendary Manchester United and Arsenal bosses Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger during the late 1990s and early 2000s] Well, I will wait [to see] if my hair grows in the next 20 years because they were more than 20 years together. I think we cannot compare anyone with the rivals of Ferguson and Wenger. Absolute legends in their clubs, they were more than one or two decades there

2019 11 08c Retrieve

[Ederson is the latest casualty to join Manchester City’s injury list but the goalkeeper’s absence is potentially the most costly] In the first season, when it was a little bit struggling with the Premier League because he comes here, it was because the team was not at top level it was not good. The problem was not Claudio. It is easy to point that this is the problem. It’s a club, it’s the team and sometimes you make a mistake, sometimes you make a good save and sometimes not. But why should I not have any confidence with one player in my team? He wouldn’t be here [if I didn’t]

Why should I not be confident with my players on my team? Why would I have doubts because a player who does not play regularly does not play? I’d not want to be a player who was doubted by his manager. I’ve seen him in training and I know how fired and how good he is - we are not going to lose because of Claudio. The red card against Atalanta was because we lose the ball in a dangerous position. You have to respect this guy. He’s played at an incredible level, he won the Copa America, other cups, respect that guy, he is an incredible top, top keeper

2019 11 08d Retrieve

[Guardiola calls on police to ensure no repeat of Manchester City bus attack at Anfield] No. Hopefully it will not happen again, so the police knew about [it] for the Champions League game before and didn’t do anything. I don’t know what they are going to do, hopefully it will be an incredible game at Anfield for the Premier League and for all around the world. That is what we want. Hopefully it’s not going to happen, the same that happened two seasons ago when we arrive, which was more than one bottle

2019 11 08e Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola backs Claudio Bravo to step up in Ederson’s absence] Why should I doubt any player in my team? Why do you ask these questions? You have to respect this guy - he has won trophies and the Copa América.

Bravo can do it, of course. We won the Carabao Cup with him, he’s an exceptional keeper, played a lot of games with his national team.

[Although Bravo was in the side who beat Arsenal in the 2018 Carabao Cup final, he was dropped for Ederson for last season’s triumph over Chelsea] Why would I have doubts because a player does not play regularly? I’d not want to be a player who was doubted by his manager. I’ve seen him in training and I know how fired up he is and how good he is. We are not going to lose because of Claudio

[Bravo came on at half-time against Atalanta but was sent off on 81 minutes] The red card was because we lost the ball in a dangerous position. In the first season when he was a little bit struggling in the Premier League it was because he comes here and the team was not at top level. The problem was not Claudio. It is easy to point that he is the problem

It’s a team game and sometimes you make a mistake; sometimes you make a good save and sometimes not. But why should I not have any confidence with one player in my team? He wouldn’t be here otherwise

[City have been accused of tactical fouling by Jürgen Klopp, along with Ole Gunnar Solskjær, José Mourinho and Manuel Pellegrini, but Guardiola shrugged off those views] Ask the managers [or ask] my players as what I tell them when I prepare a game. So, no comment. I know exactly what I said to my players in the last 11 years about what we have to do.

[If City lose to Liverpool the champions will be nine points behind but Guardiola said] What happens if we win? I think in November [the title] never ends. I know people will say if we lose it’s over but there will be a lot of games to play and I want to fight until the end. They’re not going to lose many but the season is long and a lot of situations can happen

[City have voiced concerns to Liverpool regarding a possible repeat of the attack on the team coach on the way to Anfield for the Champions League quarter-final first-leg game in April 2018. Guardiola claimed Merseyside police knew then what could happen yet failed to act] Hopefully it will not happen again. The police knew it and didn’t do anything. I don’t know what they are going to do.

Hopefully it will be an incredible game for the Premier League and all around the world. Hopefully it will not happen the same that happened two seasons ago when we arrive at Anfield.

I didn’t like the bus incident but inside the stadium when the Liverpool fans support, it’s perfect, lovely - that’s why we’re involved in the sport. The stadium, the history speaks for itself

2019 11 09 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola may believe that Liverpool are probably the strongest team in the world] I’ve never gone into a game feeling like an outsider and feeling like I’m not going to win, I never felt that. But, of course, they’re in a position six points ahead and they have been playing fantastic all season and we have many [injury] problems in some departments. But I’m not going to take the bus to Anfield on Sunday thinking I’m going to lose the game. That has never happened in my career. Always I had the feeling that if we do the special things we plan to do we will have our chance to win

[He says his side know they have to put in the perfect performance if they are to claim a victory] To win these kind of games you have to be at the top level, definitely. We can’t be half and half. The way they play they demand incredible attention in all the details for 95 minutes. We know that. But that is the point. I’m pretty sure that if there’s a chance to win at Anfield it’s when you believe you’re going to win the game. If you just think, ‘Let’s see what happens’, against that team there I think it’s not possible [to win]. The only chance we have is if we play like we are and try to create chances to score goals. That’s the only way I believe we can do it, not just at Anfield but all the stadiums around the world

[In fact, that was City’s only win at the Merseyside club in the last 38 years] I don’t believe much in these sorts of things but 38 years for one time, it means how difficult it is at Anfield. But always you have a challenge, maybe it happens [on Sunday], it is done or, for next season, it goes on. Statistics are okay but it is a game, 94 minutes, 95, 96 and what you have to do to beat them

2019 11 10 Retrieve

[Guardiola praises Man City players & refuses to be drawn on VAR controversy] Ask the referees. Ask Mike Riley and the guys with the VAR, don’t ask me. We tried to do our job - I would like to talk about our performance. It was so good. The way we played was awesome. What happened today is we showed that we are the champions. At this stadium, the way we played was incredible. I’m so proud of my team more than ever. We played against the strongest team in Europe, I’m so proud. We played so good. It’s one of the best performances we have played. We played in a way that showed why we are back-to-back champions. After seven months, if Liverpool win, I will be the first to congratulate them because we cannot deny how good they are

[Nine points off the top and finding themselves in fourth, a third consecutive league title looks a long way off for City] I am the first to congratulate Liverpool. At the end, the boxes, it is similar like the Champions League [when Liverpool beat City in 2017-18]. That’s part of the game. We lost because they scored three goals and we scored one. We need to grow and play away on big stages. The last 10, 15 minutes of the first half we played so good. The performance was so good. We tried. We never give up. That’s why we won back-to-back. We want to fight to the end. We drop points for our fault. It is what it is. Important to grow as a team, a club, as opposition

2019 11 10b Retrieve

[Guardiola ‘uncomfortable’ talking about referees after Liverpool defeat] It would not be nice [to talk about the referee] after we lose. Ask Mike Riley [general manager of English referees’ body PGMOL] and the big bosses about that, don’t ask to me. It was not sarcastic, it was, ‘thank you so much’. I said the same in the Tottenham game at home [when Gabriel Jesus had an injury-time winner ruled out after a VAR review]. Most of the time when I go to the referees and my colleagues, always I say ‘thank you so much, good luck’. It’s uncomfortable for me because it looks like ‘ah, Pep complains’ - congratulations Liverpool, 3-1. I don’t know what happens in the future, if this or that happens in the game. We never know what happens in the future. But on the decisions, ask the big bosses. The guys who understand everything of that game

Mendy could not train yesterday due to some problems, so I decided for Angelino. Mendy is not injured, he goes to his national team now. We played so good. Of course we have a young player like Angelino, Fernandinho is helping us playing that position, John Stones comes back after a long injury; their back four is the same all the time but we have to move it for many reasons

We decided to play the way we did because it’s the way we won two Premier Leagues in a row, seven titles in three seasons, and sometimes the people say ‘oh we like to watch Manchester City play football’. The teams who come here to play, they know how difficult it is, the way we do it. Of course, we have to improve in the box and be more solid. Hopefully, we can improve in the future

2019 11 11 Retrieve

[Guardiola, who had just led Barca to a historic treble in his first season at the helm, had other ideas for Keirrison. While clearly impressed by what the attacker had achieved in Brazil, he made it clear that Keirrison wouldn’t be wearing a Barcelona shirt any time soon] He’s very young. He’s got some great statistics. It’s difficult to find a goalscorer. club has decided to sign him but he’ll go out on loan. I won’t be counting on him for this season

2019 11 11b Retrieve

[Guardiola believed that City should have had a penalty in the same game for a push on Rodri by Erik Lamela] The VAR people must have been having a cup of coffee at that moment

[A week later he wasn’t’ quite as jovial after another decision at Bournemouth. David Silva was caught by Jefferson Lema for a foul that, weeks later, the Premier League admitted should have been given as a penalty. Guardiola resorted to sarcasm to show his disdain] It was clear hands in the last game, clear hands. But a penalty today, no, please

[It was a similar response when Wilfried Zaha pushed Kevin De Bruyne to the floor in the box in a win over Crystal Palace five weeks later] It’s diving. It’s diving, it’s diving. Every weekend, it is diving - Bournemouth, here - but against Tottenham it was hands, real hands in the 94th minute

[Frustrated, Guardiola was seen shaking referee Michael Oliver’s hand on the pitch and sarcastically saying] Thank you, very much

[By the time of the press conference, he simply answered questions about the controversies by redirecting inquisitors to Riley] Every time I’m being asked why one day it’s handball, the next day it’s not. Don’t ask me, ask to them

2019 11 13 Retrieve

[Manchester City star handed one-game suspension and £50,000 fine for Benjamin Mendy tweet] Bernardo is one of the most lovely people I have ever met in my life. He speaks four or five languages - that is the best way to understand how open-minded he is - and one of his best friends is Mendy. He is like a brother for him. The image for the two is not about the colour of the skin

2019 11 22 Retrieve

[Guardiola sees similarities between his start at Barcelona and Lampard’s at Chelsea] It is quite similar, but is too early. He [Lampard] has been a manager for a year-and-a-half and I am a little longer because I am a little older but he has his future in his hands. Experience doesn’t count much. I would say that when you know the club it is a good advantage and Lampard knows Chelsea perfectly - media, fans, players - that is good. When I arrived [at Barca] not many people trusted me. Few, few people. Maybe the president, sporting director and not many. Frank was similar at Derby. He didn’t take results and people said he didn’t have experience. When nobody trusts you it is perfect because you win every game - you cannot lose more. The problem is when you have won titles and nothing is enough

In Frank’s case, it is perfect, an ideal situation. At the big clubs, you have incredible players so it is easier to do a good job in Chelsea or Barcelona than another club. If you work a lot and have patience, the results and success can come

2019 11 22b Retrieve

[Guardiola in a news conference ahead of City’s game against Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday] I think you know Jose Mourinho better than me. He was many years here in different clubs. Welcome back. He’s an incredible manager. I’m pretty sure he will do a good job

[A failure to win silverware at Tottenham has been voiced as a criticism of Pochettino in some quarters] Mauricio has done an incredible job. All the managers are judged for the titles you win, but it’s not the truth. At the end, it is the job you have done and in the time he was there I think the club was better. Always the manager, when they leave, it is to know if the club or the team are better than the moment you took over these players or this club. I think it happened. But decisions are made and there’s nothing else to say

[The Man City manager is an admirer of Frank Lampard, whose third-placed Chelsea team head into the weekend a point and a position above champions City] From the beginning [of the season] his team played really good. He was consistent in his ideas and the results are there. I am happy for him. I know him a little bit and have some info because was here. He’s an excellent person. I think it is good for English football. It’s so nice that young English managers are taking over the important clubs and doing well. Playing the way they play is perfect for English football. It is the best way to get better for the national team and the club itself

2019 11 22c Retrieve

[Guardiola dismisses talk he will quit Man City: Why should people think I’m not happy here?] Why should people think I’m not happy here? Because we lost at Anfield or I’ve lost three games this season? That’s an odd reason to say I’m not happy or satisfied to be here. The first season at Anfield we had one shot on target but the last game we made 18, more corners, everything more in the most difficult stadium in the world against an incredible opponent. That’s my job. The moment I will leave is when I feel my team don’t follow [me] to play at Anfield in the way we played. At that moment I’d say, ‘Wow, I miss my team’ and after I would call my boss and say, ‘Guys, maybe you have to sit and think about it’. But I don’t have that feeling. Maybe you speak to the players and they say completely the opposite but I don’t have that feeling. If it’s not enough, next season will be better

The last season in Barca we won four titles, I’m sorry, so it wasn’t bad. We didn’t win the league or the Champions League but it was good and we played the best football that we had done in Barcelona because we knew each other, that was my feeling. So if the people say [ask] do I want to stay? I want to stay, I don’t have any reasons to move from here, I am incredibly satisfied to work with this club, with these players, and if the people think I am going to resign or be sacked for these results and nine points behind the people doesn’t know me

[Guardiola is also excited by the test of trying to chase down Liverpool, although he admits he would rather be in Jurgen Klopp’s position] I like to be in this challenge, I love to be in this position. I said I prefer to have nine points up front than behind. We have more pressure, they can lose one, two or three games and will still be top. I prefer their position, three teams with more chance to win the Premier League than us but we are in November and we’ll see tomorrow how we behave

2019 11 23 Retrieve

[After the game, Man City boss Pep Guardiola said of Sergio Aguero’s injury] We will see (about the injury) tomorrow. It doesn’t look good (for him). It looks muscular

2019 11 23b Retrieve

[Guardiola impressed by Lampard’s side despite win] After we conceded the goal, we suffered a little bit and in the best moment we had we scored from Kevin. After, we missed a lot of chances and the position for the last pass. Second half we controlled it. We lost some balls in a difficult position. They are masters to read the pass and to read the interception. [Chelsea] are a top side but we fought a lot. We adjusted some things, we had some problems from them, and we controlled better [in the second half] apart from the last minutes. [We were] tired, [had] injuries and we suffered.

They are so good, they are an incredible team. It’s Chelsea. When you see in the last 20 years, Chelsea aren’t a bad side. The last six or seven years City won more titles but before that it was Manchester United and Chelsea - they were the best. Before teams [were] just defending and use the counter-attack, now teams have the courage to use young managers, they have players with spirit, nothing to lose and they go forward, play football that is nice. You can see the top teams are all playing incredibly well. Leicester, Liverpool, our team, Chelsea

2019 11 23c Retrieve

[Ederson and Benjamin Mendy are back in the City starting XI for the visit of Chelsea] Chelsea in the last many years have been an incredible top team. From the beginning Frank’s team have played really well. He is consistent in his ideas. The results are there. I’m happy for him. I don’t know him very well, but a little bit and got info of him here and he is an excellent person. Playing the way they play is perfect for English football

2019 11 24 Retrieve

[Guardiola backs Gabriel Jesus as Aguero adds to Man City injury list] Gabriel has made one of the best starts of this season. If Sergio cannot play in the next games, we will see tomorrow and I’m sorry I don’t know exactly what he has, Gabriel is our option. Of course Sterling can play there in that position but Gabriel is going to play there, sure

He was incredible in Anfield, he was incredible [against Chelsea]. He can play there. He is so fast and our build-up is perfect. He has the quality to make the play in that position in front. If Rodri and Gundogan are fit, I don’t think [he will go back into midfield]. I like Fernandinho in that position, with the problems that we have. I like it

[Guardiola said he is not worrying about the title race or having to treat every match as a must-win fixture] [What is] important is the effort, the commitment, the situation. In football I know we want to win but just win once and the other is disaster? It’s not, it doesn’t work in that way. That’s why I said to the players: relax, do your job and we will see in December, January, February, March what position we are in. If the position is far away, okay it’s far away. We are going to try again next season

2019 11 25 Retrieve

[Guardiola concedes Man City face struggle to retain title] Liverpool look unstoppable. I know it’s far away with these numbers. My teams always try but we accept other teams can be better. So [if] we are going to lose the Premier League, we are going to try the next season. It’s not the first time Manchester City in 100 years of history lose the league. If we don’t do it, I’m not going to retire but I’m going to be disappointed. This team never gives up

[Guardiola also praised veteran Brazilian Fernandinho, saying his performance against Chelsea on Saturday was incredible. The 34-year-old midfielder once again played out of position at centre-back] He can play there. He was incredible at Anfield. I like Fernandinho in that position, with the problems that we have

2019 11 25b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola confirms Sergio Aguero needs a miracle to be fit for the Manchester derby at the Etihad Stadium on December 7 through injury] A few games. I don’t know exactly. The derby is in two weeks. Maybe we will have a miracle, but I don’t think so. He has a tendon problem and will be a few games out. We will miss Sergio. We have had some problems with injuries but we will wait for him and meantime we have Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling who can play in that position. We have no other injuries. David Silva had cramp but he’s okay

2019 11 25c Retrieve

[Guardiola backs Arsenal-linked Arteta to be a boss ‘sooner or later’ after Man City apprenticeship] I think Emery is the manager of Arsenal. Of course he’ll [Arteta] be a manager sooner or later, he’s young, always he’ll have that. We are going to finish the season and in future I don’t know what will happen

[Guardiola added on his right-hand man, who helped City to an historic domestic treble in 2018-19] I’d like him to stay with us as much as possible. Manchester City has an incredibly valuable person to work in this club for the future, but personal life is personal life and professional desire is for professionals and everyone, not just me, is more than satisfied to have him here but what happens at the end of the season I don’t know

He was an incredible player, normally holding midfielders have a vision on the pitch. When you are a striker, you think of the goals and keepers save it but the holding midfielder is an incredible lesson during your period as a football player to learn what happens, you go to school, you read it, you understand it completely. And he was so clever in that. More than that he’s an incredible human being and has a work ethic. After a few months together, I said this guy will be a manager sooner or later. He’s already a manager, he behaves as a manager, that’s why we are satisfied to have him here

2019 11 25d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City will try to retain Gabriel Jesus services for as long as possible] When he arrived, his energy, his impact immediately seduced us. I was incredibly impressed. After the injuries, it came at his best moment. He extended his contract, and when a guy extends his contract it’s because he wants to stay here. The situation he has with Sergio, he knew that before he extended the contract. My advice to him and we told him ‘if you are not sure about that position, you don’t have to extend the contract, you can go other places’. He said ‘no, I want to stay here’. He has his future is in his hands. He’s young, he’s going to play for many years, he’s the No.9 for Brazil with Firmino. I think they are incredibly complementary. Of course, Sergio will retire sooner than Gabriel and I hope he will stay longer, but, at the end, the desire for the players will decide. We’ll do everything to keep him here as long as possible

2019 11 25e Retrieve

[Guardiola’s staying but Man City fans shouldn’t expect him to sign a new contract] I want to stay, I don’t have any reasons to move. I am incredibly satisfied to work with this club, with these players, and if the people think I am going to resign for these results and being nine points behind [Liverpool], the people do not know me. I like to have this challenge, I love to be in this position. If the club wants [me] next season I want to be here 100 per cent. I want to live in this city because I know lovely people here and I want to work and live with them and I want to be here

2019 11 25f Retrieve

[Guardiola’s staying but Man City fans shouldn’t expect him to sign a new contract] I want to stay, I don’t have any reasons to move. I am incredibly satisfied to work with this club, with these players, and if the people think I am going to resign for these results and being nine points behind [Liverpool], the people do not know me

I like to have this challenge, I love to be in this position. If the club wants [me] next season I want to be here 100 per cent. I want to live in this city because I know lovely people here and I want to work and live with them and I want to be here

2019 11 27 Retrieve

[Guardiola to focus on Premier League title race after sealing Champions League progression] We qualify and we played well in the second half. The second half was better than the first. We conceded only a few counter-attacks. In the first half we were too hurried in our play and gave away possession but in the second half we were more measured and improved. I’ve played against Shakhtar Donetsk many times and they always have quality players. In general, we created chances but the draw was enough in the end. Now we have one competition already done, and our focus will be the Premier League, until we arrive in the cups. The target was to qualify and we have done it

This process, where we are right now and where we were a decade ago […] seven years in a row means you have to qualify seven times and be there and go through. We will see in which conditions we arrive in the knockout rounds, but now it is time to focus on the Premier League

[The two-time Champions League-winning coach suggested he will not play a weakened team in Croatia] Of course I will take a look but we are going to have enough players. We will use the first team. The Champions League is prestigious. We are going to travel with the intention to win. For respect for Shakhtar and Atalanta we have to do it

2019 11 29 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has been inducted into the League Manager Association’s (LMA) Hall of Fame] What a privilege. When you come down the corridor and see all the big names, big managers, big personalities being here that would’ve helped to make football better, football that we have right now. I think all the managers here that have been inducted into the Hall of Fame is because we were in incredible clubs with incredible players. As long as we can help them and try to think on the same side and the same page, that’s the only reason we can do what we do as managers. Without the quality of the players we have, the managers cannot have success

2019 11 29b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has confirmed that Mikel Arteta will travel with Manchester City to Newcastle United but would not discuss whether his assistant might be a target for Arsenal] He is in the squad, he travels to Newcastle

[Asked about the possibility of Arsenal making an approach for the 37-year-old] It’s not a question for me

[Guardiola expressed sympathy for Unai Emery’s sacking] I’m so sorry for him. Every time a manager is sacked, it’s not good news. It changes nothing about my opinion on his capacity. He is an incredible professional, who did incredibly well in Spain and in France. He made an incredible achievement. I don’t think anybody - okay, Zinedine Zidane with Real Madrid [in the Champions League] - could win three Europa Leagues in a row with Sevilla. It’s one of the most incredible achievements. But that’s football. He knows, I know it depends on the results. It’s simple. But I’m sure he will find a new job soon

[He expects right-hand man Arteta to branch out on his own at some stage] Of course he’ll [Arteta] be a manager sooner or later, he’s young, always he’ll have that. We are going to finish the season and in future I don’t know what will happen

I’m pretty sure [he’ll succeed me]. He will have success. Sooner or later it’s going to happen (Arteta becoming a manager). He’s a young, young manager. He has experience already, handling big players and big teams. He’s got an incredible work ethic. He has a special talent to analyse what happens and to find solutions

2019 11 29c Retrieve

[Manchester City’s trip to Newcastle brings a timely reminder of why it’s still far too early to make any predictions about the Premier League title race] I never was angry with my players. All I said was the reality of what happened in the game. Saying the truth is not being angry or being grumpy. What happened is my job. When we are doing well, I say we are doing well and when we are bad, I say we are bad. The reason why we could not win that game is because Newcastle made an incredibly good defensive performance, had two shots on target and we didn’t play like we could

We played slow, we didn’t attack. At 1-0 we forgot to attack, we forgot to counterattack but it’s 12 months ago. We’ve learned from that obviously and we spoke about it. We had a bad afternoon, we cannot escape that and we spoke about that that’s not the way we are. We can lose games but by being ourselves. Everyone understood that and we took a step forward

[They were defeated at Anfield before the international break and a trip to St James’ Park will remind them of one of their worst performances of the past 12 months] The way we played at Liverpool is not comparable to Newcastle. It was a million times better

2019 11 29d Retrieve

[Guardiola not thinking about Premier League title as Man City look to rein in Leicester & Liverpool] I’m not thinking about how many games we have to win - I know we cannot lose games. I’m not thinking honestly about winning the Premier League right now. I never thought about it, even in the years we won. To win the Premier League, we have to be close to Leicester, first of all, and then to Liverpool. The target, when you play games in different competitions every three days, is the next one. You choose the best players possible for this specific game and try to win

The last two seasons, we won 1-0 and, last season, we lost 2-1. Newcastle away is always one of the nicest environments and stadiums in England. Obviously, it’s a tough test, but next Tuesday we have Burnley and then the derby against Manchester United, so we know the situation we are in. We trained really good today [Friday]. I saw the team were ready. We fly this afternoon and then tomorrow, 12.30, we try to do a good game

I never was angry with my players. All I said was the reality of what happened in the game. Saying the truth is not being angry or being grumpy. What happened is my job. When we are doing well I say we are doing well and when we are bad I say we are bad. The reason why we could not win that game is because Newcastle made an incredibly good defensive performance, had two shots on target and we didn’t play like we could. After that we spoke about the next game and tried to be who we are. At that moment I didn’t think we’d win the Premier League and win 14 games in a row. It’s a big mistake to think about that because it’s far away. We did the same meeting that we’ve done when I believe we need a meeting, nothing special. What I want for my players is that when we win, to understand the reason why we win or why we lose

2019 11 29f Retrieve

[Guardiola ‘open’ to staying at Man City longer than five years] It depends on results, after five years, we’ll see what happens. I’m open to it, yes. I’m so comfortable here. It’s not the same a manager five years as two, everyone is fresh after two. I speak for myself and I want to see my players, the environment, it’s not as simple as seeing the players, how we work together, that’s the most important thing. We have to feel we can still do it together, enjoy it together, when I feel that’s not the case then we’ll talk to the club

I’m older and I have already [managed in] three incredible leagues. It’s different, now I’m more experienced, maybe with the experience I have now I would stay. Still I have 18 months, that’s a lot of time in football, that’s why the club and myself agree, we play tomorrow, do our best and after that we see how everything goes. I trust a lot the club and they trust me. The rest will decide

[Guardiola said he would not stand in Arteta’s way if he wanted to take the position but hopes he stays part of his team at the Etihad Stadium] I said many times with my players, staff, they’re free to do what they want to do. Same with players, that’s not the case with Mikel, it’s about being a friend. I want the best for him, we want to stay together but I don’t know what’s the best for him. But tomorrow he travels to Newcastle. It’s an honour - it’s an incredible honour for other clubs, prestigious clubs like Arsenal, to take a look at our staff. It’s an honour, a privilege and good for Mikel. We want to protect him and hopefully he can stay with us

2019 11 30 Retrieve

[Guardiola is fully aware of that fact and will continue to focus on the present rather than get caught up in what the future might bring. He told reporters after the stalemate at Newcastle] It’s not a good idea to think about the Premier League or how many points, just win games, if we won’t win it will be more difficult. We have another opponent in front of us, we have to try and win games and see what happens

2019 11 30b Retrieve

[Guardiola claims Man City at ‘good level’ despite dropping precious points at Newcastle] We played at a good level. Defending set-pieces and everything, we move the ball well, we found spaces outside, especially with Benjamin Mendy, we arrive in front of goal many, many times but we couldn’t score

[Asked if he was frustrated by the perceived negative tactics of the hosts] It’s what we have lived with for the last four years - it’s always like this. We found a way today but at the end we conceded a goal. It was a tight game like we expected, they defend solid, had 10 players in the box. It’s one of those days, they defend so deep, we play so good. Maybe in the first half we should move more left-right-right-left, but we create enough chances. We conceded two short on target and concede two goals. The way we played was really good, we created chances and 10 players in the box is not easy, Martin Dubravka made good saves

[Fernandinho conceded a free-kick for a rash challenge on Javier Manquillo, with the Blues then left to pay the price] At the end we shouldn’t concede the free-kick and Shelvey made the difference. Shelvey put it in the corner, [but] we could have avoided it in that position

2019 11 30c Retrieve

[What’s up with Pep’s Man City? Title defence already looks over] We conceded two shots on target and concede two goals. The way we played was really good, we created chances against 10 players in the box and Martin Dubravka made good saves. At the end we shouldn’t concede the free kick and [Jonjo] Shelvey made the difference

In the Premier League, you’ve never won it. In that situation, they didn’t create much, so then we needed to be solid and not make a mistake and try to win the game. Shelvey put it in the corner, [but] we could have avoided it in that position

[When asked afterwards about reeling in the Reds with another winning run] It’s not a good idea to think about the Premier League or how many points. Just win games. If we don’t win, it will be more difficult

2019 12 01 Retrieve

[Guardiola defends misfiring Man City stars] I think honestly you have to see how the players run, how they fought, how they tried to do it, the body language. We never give up. The team is always there. That is my feeling. You analyse the results, the 2-2. Of course, it is not good for us. It’s good for Newcastle. I know it doesn’t count but I have to analyse the performance and the performance was good

I am not thinking about how many games we have to win, just try to win the next one. Last season when we were here, we were not talking about the Premier League and how many games you have to win. It’s not about that. Just now recover, prepare and try to win against Burnley. After that the derby and make these steps

2019 12 02 Retrieve

[When asked why he hasn’t been playing John Stones and Otamendi together] Because I like Fernandinho in that position. Right now, that’s why he plays

[On if he has been happy with Fernandinho’s performances in defence despite the fact he has been a midfielder by trade throughout his career] Have you seen the games? I prefer Gundogan and Rodri in this position [midfield].

[The Spanish boss went on to express his belief that wasteful finishing has been his side’s main issue in recent weeks] We have 26 shots against Newcastle and they scored two goals. To do that away is incredible. We always try to create more and concede less. We did it again but unfortunately, we couldn’t win

It’s good they believe it [that the race is still on]. They have to believe to win tomorrow. We can’t think too much about the people in front. We have to think about what we need to do to win the games

2019 12 02b Retrieve

[Guardiola ready to gamble on Fernandinho] I don’t want any players in January. I don’t want any players. If we cannot do it in summer, we cannot do in January

Fernandinho is not the reason why we win or lose. When we beat Chelsea everyone said how fantastic Fernandinho was. When we don’t win [critics say] it’s because of Fernandinho. It will be my decision. I like him in that position because of the build up for the fast [play], for the long balls

[Both players will have a night of huge responsibility on Tuesday against the height and power of Burnley as they try to rebuild their flagging title challenge; Fernandinho because of his lack of height and Rodri because he will take on the Brazilian’s old role] [We have to] defend high and try to play as much as possible and to avoid [free-kicks] as much as possible. That is one of their successes because when they are able to increase the possession in the box they are so good

2019 12 03 Retrieve

[Guardiola adamant Man City don’t need overhaul] We don’t have to rebuild too much. Three players is not rebuilding the team. Rebuilding the team is seven or eight, which we did in the second season when seven players finished their contract because 11 players were over 30. To buy two or three players is not a rebuild, it’s just substituting positions. David Silva’s confirmed he’s leaving. Fernandinho doesn’t know but it’s normal - the players that arrive at his age and this stage of their lives. Of course, we have to replace them

When they come for an incredible opportunity in January for the next four, five, six years maybe we could think about it, but that is not possible. Normally the players we could think it would be interesting to add something for our squad they are not going to sell. We could not sign a centre-back (in the summer). You know the history - we could not sign one. Nico (Otamendi) continued and we decided to adapt Fernandinho in this position and that’s all. Sometimes the club wants to try to do their best, but we cannot. We have to adapt and adjust with the players that we have and next season we will see

2019 12 04 Retrieve

[Asked if City’s performance showed they were not giving up on a title they have won in each of the past two seasons] The title is over. What I read, nobody gives us a chance. It’s done

For the distance we have against Liverpool, it would be a little bit crazy to think about the title, honestly. We have to think about the derby, go game by game because it is not just the Premier League. There are other competitions, like FA Cup and Carabao and Champions League. The important thing is to take this rhythm in our games for the next fixtures

I’m glad for the fact we passed the ball more than usual over the last games. In the last games there is no regret, but the only [negative] feeling I have is the lack of more passes. We are built to have the ball and pass and pass and pass. Sometimes we start left and want to finish left and you have to move the ball more. That is the only way against a well-organised defence like Burnley. You have to find the spaces inside and outside. We did that really well

2019 12 04b Retrieve

[Guardiola never doubted Gabriel Jesus as Man City striker ends league goal drought] Of course it’s not easy [replacing Aguero] but the team doesn’t have doubts about him. As a striker sometimes you score, sometimes not. We need the quality of the players up front to make the difference. Of course we need him. The strikers are there to score goals and we need him. His effort, commitment, which is always there, but of course, strikers like him and Sergio live for goals, it was important. We played a good game. Controlled them, didn’t concede much, except one action in the first half and a goal in the last minutes. We played really well. The quality of our players made the difference

[Guardiola again stuck with Fernandinho in defence] We are open to accept [media] opinions, but we know the quality of the players much better than all of you, and know what the team needs in this moment. Fernandinho for his quality, his personality and his character is an important player and I like him to play [in defence]. I said it when we lost games and I say it when we win. When we win it’s a perfect decision, when we lose it’s a bad decision. Rodri was incredible, in his position, offensive, defensive, so clever. He has much better, the picture of our game, a picture of the players where they are. Fantastic player, so young, and he’s adapted perfectly to this country. He’s got it. He’s a guy who wants to learn, listen, every training session he’s ready and that’s why always we can count on him without a problem

[When asked if City had demonstrated the quality needed to stay in the title race] We are far away [from Liverpool] so we cannot think about that. Our level was so good in most games. I don’t have the feeling we played bad in any single game. Sometimes you need something more and there are situations we cannot control. In general the level of the team I am more than satisfied

2019 12 04c Retrieve

[Guardiola’s father says Man City boss ‘could return to Barcelona’] It could be a yes, that he returns to Barcelona, but it would be to coach. Since he left home, he has always made his own decisions. I’ve never advised him

2019 12 06 Retrieve

[Guardiola: Gabriel Jesus must believe he’s good enough without me or his mum telling him] He has to be himself. We need him and his goals. That’s why we won the last game. We need him for his goals and if he puts this idea in his head he is able to do it every game. For all the players, confidence has to be there all the time not just because of good or bad performances or winning or losing games. The greatest athletes all the time have a strong mentality that we all have to learn from. That is the key difference. They have to play, otherwise they will not be in a high level playing in the Premier League. They have quality and they can control it, they don’t need their manager, mum or friends to speak to them. They have to believe they are good enough

2019 12 06b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola insists there have been no approaches for Mikel Arteta and he wants the assistant coach to stay with the club] There has been no approach. Have I spoken to him about his future? No. Do I want him to stay? Yes

[Guardiola acknowledged Arteta was ready to take a job in management] I said last game he’ll be close to me against Manchester United and hopefully he can stay, but at the end of the season I don’t know what will happen. He will be here until the end of the season, yes, I think so. I’m not a guy who puts a hand on my staff to say what they have to do. We are human beings and everyone has dreams and desires. He’s ready. It’s the right time when he gets an offer, and he takes the offer. If you tell me ready about his knowledge of the game, as a human, professional, work ethic, he is ready, absolutely. He’s ready

He is able to, absolutely. But it depends on him, the club, many things I cannot decide. When I arrived here, we are in touch to work together, I was convinced on that, and he was convinced to help us. The time we are together, it’s magnificent. Hopefully he stays this year, next year, for as long as possible at this club, that would be my dream, but Mikel has his own life and I will never say what he has to do

2019 12 06c Retrieve

[Man City boss Guardiola surprised Man Utd haven’t been a title rival since he arrived in England] My reflection is that we were better. In the time we’ve been here, we’ve been better than United. At the end of the season, our points show that, so the consistency was incredible. It surprised me, too [that United haven’t challenged]. In one game or another game, a derby, anything can happen. We are not here to judge the results or what distance there is between teams or the past or the future. It’s just tomorrow, 5.30pm, the game, try to beat them

It’s clear they are a counter-attacking team. They do high pressing and they are aggressive. When they defend deep, of course they attack immediately with James and Rashford. They are so clinical and so good with space to run. When I remember the goals against Chelsea at the beginning of the season, most of them were on the counter-attack. When Chelsea attacked a little more. Against Liverpool, the goal was a counter-attack. They have the quality to do that

[Guardiola added that their results against top sides proves they are a squad full of quality] It shows how good United and their players and Ole are. It’s not easy to beat the top, top teams and he’s been able to do it regularly, especially this season. They have a good mentality and great belief

2019 12 07 Retrieve

[City manager Pep Guardiola praised the club’s reaction to the incident and admits football faces a fight to stop racism in the stands] I support the statement the club has done. Hopefully we are going to solve it so it doesn’t happen again. I’m pretty sure the club and the police are going to take the right decision so it doesn’t happen again. It’s a battle to fight every day. Unfortunately it happens in many places and hopefully it will not happen again

2019 12 01 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola when asked about staying beyond his current deal] I’m open (to the idea), yes. It is not about what the club wants or not. For me, I want to see my players and the reaction of my players and everything. It is not as simple as I want to extend. I want to see the club, I want to see the players, I want to see how we are still working together. That is the most important thing after five years together. You have to feel like we can do it together and enjoy to work together

I’m so comfortable working with this club. When you are (somewhere for) five years it depends on the results. We will see what happens this season and next season

2019 12 03 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola rules out Manchester City spending in January transfer window] I don’t want any players in January. We could not sign a centre back [in the summer]. Nico Otamendi continued and we decided to adapt Fernandinho in this position and that’s all

There will be a need to regenerate. David Silva has confirmed he is leaving. Fernandinho doesn’t know, but its normal when players reach this age and stage in their lives. Of course we have to replace them [if they leave]

2019 12 07 Retrieve

[Guardiola congratulates team despite loss to Manchester United] We conceded three or four counter attacks in the first half. They were clinical but I am more than happy for our performance. We pushed them, we created chances. In general I am happy with the performance. No regrets. I know who we are as a team. I am delighted to work with these guys. We tried and we tried in the second half. Unfortunate we scored late and could not turn the result

Yes we lost 1-2 but I congratulate my team, my players were fantastic, we are a fantastic team. They are so fast, so quick and sometimes when you lose the ball it is more difficult. We tried, we got to the last third many, many times and they can run - maybe a bit more than usual

[Despite City falling further behind the Reds in the race for the title, Guardiola insists his side must not give up] It is not time to think about that. We have to think about what we have to do and think about the next game. Doesn’t matter if six, eight or 14 points we have to continue. We are a fantastic team

[City released a statement after the game confirming they are cooperating with police after reports United players Fred and Jesse Lingard were the target of racist abuse from the crowd] Of course not. I think the club are making a statement and I support that

2019 12 08 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola conceded Manchester City could not live with the pace of Manchester United’s attacking players in Saturday’s 2-1 derby defeat] I like how my team played. We conceded a little bit more space - not more than usual, but more than last year against United. We knew about the pace they have, with James, Martial and Rashford, but sometimes it is not possible to control it

[Nicolas Otamendi pulled a goal back for City five minutes from the end] In general, we did what we like. We arrived in the final third many, many, many, many times. Unfortunately, we couldn’t finish a little bit more, but I like to watch my team. I know nobody agrees but I like it

Sometimes it happens. Sometimes you don’t win and the others are better and you lose. Normal is not winning the league always, sometimes you lose. It is important not to give up and try to do what we do as a team. All the games we play a season we play the game I want my team to play. After that, the counter-attacks, the final third, when we struggle in some departments okay, it’s part of the process. Maybe next season we will be better.

2019 12 08b Retrieve

[The City boss is again facing questions about his side’s openness after nine games without a clean sheet] I like my team, how they played. We conceded a little bit more than usual but the last years against United we have conceded a bit. We knew the pace they have with James, Martial and Rashford. Sometimes it is not possible to control it because when you lose the ball it is difficult. In general we did what we liked. We arrived in the final third many times. Unfortunately we cannot finish a little bit more but I like to watch my team like this

[Despite his players’ struggles, Guardiola isn’t about to tweak his tactics anytime soon] If we were only five points behind, 10 points, 14, 20 - we would have to continue. I said many times in the last weeks we have to continue. If we are not able to we are going to try next season

2019 12 08c Retrieve

[Guardiola says they must not think about giving up regardless of how big the points gap is] It’s not time to think about this. We think about the next game, but it’s unrealistic to think about it, to catch up, it doesn’t matter if we are six, seven, 14, 25 points, we have to continue. We are a fantastic team, we play so good

2019 12 08d Retrieve

[Guardiola rules out prioritising Champions League as Man City’s title challenge falters] We are not thinking to win the Champions League. We are trying to win games, to win the next one. I am not thinking about how many points we need or how many points they have to drop. We are not able to be consistent like we were in the last two seasons so that is the reality and you have to help the players

It is United, United have the quality to defend and the quality to attack on the counter-attack. And you have to accept that but that is the level we face against Liverpool, United, Barcelona, Madrid, Juventus, that is the teams we have to face and the reality is maybe we are not able now to compete with them so we have to improve and accept it and move forward. I could come here and complain for many things, I have reasons to complain, my guys or the guys who are quite often here don’t happen, and maybe we need to live that as a club to improve, to accept the reality now and improve

Being 14 points behind, no, it is the first time. As a football player, maybe. As a manager, no. The reality is we are 14 points [behind] for the mistakes we have done, for the quality of our opponents and especially as well the things we cannot control. That is the reality but we have to continue. We are at the beginning of December and we have other competitions to play and other games to fight and improve on that and maybe it is going to help us for the future, so we need to live that as a club to be better

2019 12 09 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola assures Phil Foden his chance is coming at Manchester City] Maybe (he will play more). He can play - there are no doubts about that. He is ready; he will play Wednesday and is ready. I count all of them. I take decisions. I know how it works. No-one mentioned Phil after we won at Burnley! His time is coming and we will see in the next games

[Angelino was also included from the off, with the Spaniard filling a left-back berth ahead of France international Benjamin Mendy] In that moment, Angelino plays better than the other ones in this position. After two years injured, you are not fit. Benjamin Mendy needs time

2019 12 10 Retrieve

[Guardiola has faith in Phil Foden to replace David Silva as Man City’s heartbeat] That is our wish. Of course David is a legend - the amount of games, the amount of titles, but that is our wish and we believe he [Foden] can do it. He can do it, in small spaces he is so good, Phil. He has this incredible quality for the first reception in small spaces - also the box to box, like a typical English player. He will get the minutes he needs at his age right now. Always he has a good impact coming from the bench. Some players don’t have an impact coming from the bench, always I have that feeling from Phil. Against Atalanta we believed he could play an incredible game and he did it. Alongside him are Rodri, [Ilkay] Gundogan, Kevin [De Bruyne] - many players, but I never doubt about him [Foden]. Whether he plays 90 minutes, 20 minutes or not one single minute, the confidence is always there

[Another highly rated prospect will face City in the form of Dani Olmo, whom Guardiola jokingly suggested was one of hundreds of players the Premier League champions want to buy] We want to buy 100 players every month. One of them is Olmo. We’ll see. He’s an incredible surprise, he came from Barcelona’s academy and it’s not easy to come here [Zagreb], and with the Spain Under-21s he was one of the best players. So, maybe it’s the last year or one of the last years he’s here, then he’ll go to one of the big clubs to compete for a big name. I’m so glad for him, he’s doing so well in this league and the Champions League - the future is in his hands

2019 12 10b Retrieve

[Already 14 points behind Liverpool at the top of the Premier League, a third successive title seems beyond reach] Our game is there, but to reach this level we have to improve some departments - in the boxes. Right now we are not ready but in February maybe we are better and after that anything can happen

2019 12 11 Retrieve

[Unleash Foden! Guardiola can’t hold back Man City star any longer] He just has to have fun and play

2019 12 11b Retrieve

[Gabriel Jesus broke a record held by PSG star Neymar as he also reached 100 career goals with a Champions League hat-trick against Dinamo Zagreb] We are incredibly delighted with Gabi. Hopefully it can help him with his mood. He can be positive, he’s a fighter, he can help us to defend and does everything but a striker needs goals and they are important for him, for the team, for everything

2019 12 11c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has hailed ‘incredible’ young midfielders Phil Foden and Mason Mount as future England stars] The way you play in England is a bit different [to Spain]. But now young players at Chelsea, Mount for example, are quite similar. One-on-one, creating more spaces. England have an incredible generation for the young players, the next decade England has incredible players and it’s good for the country

[when asked what he thought about the youngster’s performance] So good. I think he’s a player who is more dangerous closer to the box than away from the box. He still has to learn a bit away from the box. When he played close to the box, attacking central defenders, he was incredibly dangerous, he played really well

2019 12 11d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City also continued their goalscoring ways, ending their group stage with a routine 4-1 win over Dinamo Zagreb on Wednesday] It’s nice - we’ve scored a lot and not conceded so many. In some games we arrive a lot. It’s nice 500 times of joy, these four years together we’ve had fun and an incredible amount of good moments, hopefully we can score 500 more - in two months!

2019 12 12 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Dani Olmo is a top player with a bright future who can play at the highest level of European football] He’s a top player - he has a bright future, of course. His performance today shows it. About the transfer and the money he deserves, that is not the point. The point is he is an incredible player and I am pretty sure he is able to play in the strong leagues in Europe. Hopefully if Dinamo wants and he wants, it can happen

It’s nice - 500 times of joy. You know, when we score a goal, it’s the best moment of this game, so we enjoy a lot. These four years together, overall we have had an incredible amount of fun moments, so it was nice. Hopefully we can score 500 more … in two months!

2019 12 13 Retrieve

[Guardiola denies having a break clause in his Man City contract] No, it’s not true (contract clause). I spoke about my intentions a few weeks ago

[Guardiola claims that City will not be active in the winter transfer market] The players who start the season will finish the season. No business

[On the Nathan Ake rumours] No, it’s not an issue

[Guardiola went on to hint Phil Foden could retain a place in City’s line up against the Gunners] He played 50 games at 19 years old, in one of the top teams in Europe. We’re delighted with him, he had a really good game on Wednesday and he’s going to have incredible games in the future […] He deserves it, the way he’s trained, the way he is a person. He’s more mature all the time, he’s played a lot, maybe not 50 games at 90 minutes but he’s been involved in good moments and difficult moments. We trust him a lot

2019 12 13b Retrieve

[Guardiola rules out Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake move as he says Man City won’t buy in January] The players who start the season will finish the season. No business

[When asked to comment on the possibility of a swoop for Ake] No, it’s not an issue

[Guardiola’s assistant Mikel Arteta has been touted as a candidate to succeed Unai Emery as Arsenal’s next permanent manager] You can be 45 years old and not be ready or 35 years old and be ready. Only he knows, I’ve spoken about the situation a few weeks ago, there’s no more to add. I said two weeks ago, he’s got two weeks more experience, so he’s ready

[City are sweating on the fitness of David Silva heading into their clash with the Gunners] He’s not fit, yesterday and today he couldn’t train then we’ll see tomorrow. It was a kick on the leg that was painful, not a big issue

2019 12 14 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Unai Emery was sacked by Arsenal because of poor results, not because he couldn’t get his message across to the players] If he was able to win more games, the communication is perfect. Today there are a lot of weapons to communicate to the players, through the images, through not just the words. I do not completely agree with this. We make analysis after the results, after what happens, it is the same guy. It is not easy sometimes when you want to be your own language. But there are the hands, the body, the emotions, the images, your assistants, many things but the reason not was I think the capacity of Unai, there is no doubts about that, it happened because he didn’t win games

[Guardiola insisted he is not thinking about catching the runaway leaders] There is not one thought on my mind about Liverpool. I should think about Leicester. It is far away to think about them. To take Liverpool we first have to think about Leicester, then we will see. In the last years we were incredibly consistent home and away but this season we have dropped points. It is not about the performance. I would be really really concerned if our game was not there

[Guardiola says there gap means they are able to relax] I don’t think [it will]. I played in two such competitions. When you play in them as the best teams in the world you have an advantage for these amount of points, especially for ourselves being a little bit shorter than Liverpool. But you never know

2019 12 15 Retrieve

[Guardiola have to field questions about his assistant potnetially swapping the Etihad for the Emirates] You can be 45-year-old and believe you’re not ready and 35 and believe you’re ready. Only he knows. But if you ask whether he’s ready in his knowledge of the game, as a person, as a professional, then he’s ready. I’m not a guy that puts a gun to the heads of my staff or players and says what they have to do. We’re human beings and everyone has dreams and desires. Hopefully he can stay this season and the next one - as long as possible in this club. That would be my dream, but Mikel has his own life and I will never say what he has to do

2019 12 15b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola claims midfield superstar Kevin De Bruyne plays the type of passes other footballers are simply incapable of] Kevin made an incredible two goals and an assist. He is an extraordinary player so we don’t discourage his quality. He sees passes and action that normal humans can’t see, having a special vision and assists. Always we speak to him, ‘You have to score more goals’, and today he scored two incredible goals and got an assist for Raheem Sterling. Kevin can play in different positions, but, of course, when they can think more in attack and less in defence, it is much better

[Guardiola was satisfied with the performance of Phil Foden, who made his first Premier League start of the season against Arsenal] Phil always plays good. He doesn’t always touch the ball but he played well defensively. We make the actions for the counter-attack but not as much ball possession, so that’s why he did not touch the ball too much. Always when he has the ball, he does another extraordinary thing. He is a great player. He did what he should do and helped us to win the game, especially in the first half. He’s so clever with his passes and so on

2019 12 15c Retrieve

[Guardiola doesn’t want ‘important’ Arteta to feel ‘uncomfortable’ at Man City] [He has] a lot [of influence]. He is part of the huge success we had. An important part. What will happen will happen. I think he is part of our staff so what is going to happen I don’t know. At the end it’s personal, if he wants a job we are open to talk. I don’t want to make him uncomfortable

[Guardiola handed Phil Foden a rare start] Played so good, as we knew it, as normal, he played in a position he was not used to but playing away at a big club, always he does every action with a good rhythm

It’s not frustrating, we play fantastic. We spoke about spaces and didn’t find them so well. We talked about that and we played better when Bernardo came on. We lose games this season and last season only a few, we sometimes play much better than today and we lost, football is sometimes about duty to analyse the game not just the result

2019 12 15d Retrieve

[Guardiola says performance against Man Utd was ‘better in many, many ways’ than in Arsenal win] We made an incredible result but the way we played against Manchester United was better in many, many things. I know we are judged on the result but I have a duty to judge the performance, not just the result

2019 12 16 Retrieve

[When asked to address the possibility of Arteta taking over at Arsenal, Guardiola told his post-match press conference on Sunday] He’s an important, important part (of Manchester City’s set-up). If it happens, it will happen. When he wants to talk we are open to talk but it’s private, I don’t want to make things uncomfortable

2019 12 16b Retrieve

[Man City in dark over talks as Arteta emerges as Arsenal’s top target] When he wants to talk we are open to talk but it’s private, I don’t want to make things uncomfortable

2019 12 16c Retrieve

[Pragmatic Pep - Man City’s blueprint for the Champions League] The problem we had is that we made actions for the counter-attack but not for ball possession except the last 15-20 minutes.

For the stability of our team we did it today. Kevin De Bruyne can play in both positions of course for the amount of those type of players that we have, when they can think in just attack and less in defence, it’s much better. He can see passes and action that a normal human being cannot see

2019 12 17 Retrieve

[Arteta’s Arsenal talks confirmed by Guardiola with Man City in the dark over assistant’s future] I know what you know. Today I saw him. He’s travelling, yes. We were so smart to pick him up and now the others want him. He’s an incredible person, a good manager, that’s why he’s done well with us. He’s talking with Arsenal so I don’t know what’s going to happen

[Guardiola added on being kept in the loop regarding Arteta’s meeting with Arsenal’s director at the start of the week] Yes, I knew it. He’s an adult, he knows exactly what to do. He was incredibly honest with me. The organisation of the club is always live, it doesn’t always stay the same, what works today might not work tomorrow. The people today maybe won’t be here tomorrow. Now he’s part of our group and staff and he stays here. When we have any new news I’ll know, you’ll know and we’ll see what happens. It happens. We had Lee Nobes went to Liverpool and now teams want Mikel. He knows what we want, what we’d like, but in the end, it’s his decision. We decided to work together three years ago, I’d like him to be up here on Wednesday

[Man City was handed a tough last-16 tie against Real Madrid when the draw was made in Switzerland on Monday] It’s an incredible test for us. The kings of this competition, we’ll prepare as best as possible, we’ve got two months and we’ll see what situation we arrive in come February

2019 12 17b Retrieve

[Sane steps up recovery but Guardiola can’t guarantee he will stay at Man City in January] When will Leroy Sane be back? I don’t know. The process is [about] getting perfect, not setbacks. I think he is physically strong, muscular, but he is recovering well. The next step is on the pitch and then the team, and always will be so happy when he is back

[Asked about a possible move in January] I don’t know about that. Anything can happen

2019 12 17c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola hints Mikel Arteta may find it difficult to turn a struggling Arsenal around if he is to become their next manager] I think Arsenal [are] always one of the best teams of the last 20 years. When Arsene [Wenger] took over the team, he raised the club to another level and now they are struggling a little bit the last years. When the club takes a decision to replace the manager or buy players it’s always to rise to be better. Whether it’s going to happen or not, I don’t know. You know my opinion about Mikel. He’s a professional human being and a person, I don’t have doubts about that

Mikel was honest with me. Arsenal - we were there two days ago. They were talking with our sporting director, the CEO and didn’t say anything. I don’t know if the meeting was at one at night because they didn’t want to make it public, but in the end it was public. I think Arsenal want to do the best thing possible. Sometimes it’s not easy to handle this kind of situation. We cannot deny that all the clubs around the world make behind the scenes the first contact to try to avoid the clubs that are in charge. All I can say from what I’m concerned is that Mikel was clear with me and that’s all. Perhaps there is a problem with the chairmen and the CEOs - they have to talk to each other

It is a good argument. Why not [go]? It is uncomfortable for me. It is a question for Mikel, I am not in his brain. We talk about it a little bit, but his feelings are his feelings. He knows we are delighted to work with him. Hopefully he is delighted to work with us. We would like to continue, but it is not in our hands. I said many times, it’s the same with the players, if they have other desires or wishes whatever, what can we do? We are not going to tell him, ‘stay, stay stay,’ if he doesn’t want to stay. He knows exactly what we think about him, at the club, after that, we cannot do more. I think the club has done everything and we cannot do any more. If he stays I’d be happy, incredible, because we all work together really well. Hopefully he can feel the same as me or with us. If he decides to move I’ll wish him all the best, for him, his family and for his professional future. I will beat him! That’s a joke. The best of luck.

2019 12 17d Retrieve

[Guardiola’s secret weapon: ‘Incredible’ Arteta is perfect for Arsenal] He’s helped me a lot. From day one, so not just the last two seasons, from day one. He has an incredible work ethic, and he has a special talent to analyse what happens, and to find the solutions. We talk a lot about what he believes and feels and so on. He helped me a lot, especially in the first year. He knew the Premier League - like for example in games against Stoke. He’s so happy when we win but suffers when we don’t and that is why he tries to find a solution. He’s an incredible human being, with incredible values about what it means in the locker room to be together, and he is already an incredible manager and he’ll have incredible success in his future. We see football in really quite a close way

2019 12 18 Retrieve

[City boss Pep Guardiola handed Sterling the captain’s armband] It doesn’t matter who scores, but I’m happy for him. He likes to play and is fit all the time, so good for him

2019 12 18b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola stressed that he cannot guarantee when Leroy Sane will return to full fitness] When will he be back? I don’t know. The process is [about] getting perfect, not [risking] setbacks. I think he is physically strong, muscular, but he is recovering well. The next step is on the pitch and then the team, and we will be so happy when he is back

[Adding on whether a January move could be on the cards] I don’t know about that. Anything can happen

2019 12 18c Retrieve

[Guardiola has already hinted that Arteta may find it tough to turn around the Gunners’ flagging fortunes] When the club takes a decision to replace the manager or buy players it’s always to rise to be better. Whether that’s going to happen or not, I don’t know. You know my opinion about Mikel. He’s a professional human being and a person, I don’t have doubts about that

2019 12 19 Retrieve

[Man City FFP decision delayed until 2020] We are not guilty until it’s proven. This club makes a big step forward with the investment [we have made]. Can you do that without top players? No way. Money helps to buy the incredible players we have.

But [regarding the UEFA investigation] we wait, if we’re punished we accept it. But I listen to my chairman [Khaldoon al-Mubarak] and my CEO [Ferran Soriano], they give me the arguments for why we are under investigation and I trust them.

They tell me we are fair and we absolutely follow the rules, I believe them. If the opponents and contenders think it’s just about the money, it is OK.

2019 12 20 Retrieve

[Man City hoping for Aguero & Stones fitness boost but David Silva remains a doubt to face Leicester] Sergio Aguero and John Stones have trained. They have had two sessions. David Silva, no.

[Guardiola expects a difficult game against Brendan Rodgers’ side but remains confident City can close the gap at the top] There are a lot of games to play. The distance we have now, the teams in front or behind can change in a few weeks, and especially in this period. We have to do what we have to do. They [Leicester] have a lot of quality and they play good and control all departments of the game. They are a fantastic team and last season I thought they would be fighting for the top four

2019 12 20b Retrieve

[Guardiola wishes ‘excellent coach’ Arteta well at Arsenal] Mikel has been an excellent coach for Manchester City. He has shown impressive dedication, hard work and knowledge of football during his time here and has been a real contributor to the club’s achievements over the past few years. We all wish him well in his new role. I am sure he is ready for it

2019 12 21 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has revealed his assistant Mikel Arteta is in talks with Arsenal but will still travel to Oxford on Wednesday night for their Carabao Cup quarter-final] He’s an incredible person, work ethic, and that’s why he’s with us. He is talking with Arsenal so I don’t know what’s going to happen. Now it happens with Mikel that teams want him. He knows exactly what we would like but at the end the decision is personal

2019 12 21b Retrieve

[Life after Arteta: How Guardiola will react after Arsenal took his right-hand man] We’ll stay with the same people. Right now we are not adding anyone, we’ll work with the people who are here

He’s a guy who pays attention to absolutely everything. For example, he was in the warm-up, and we had doubts about Quique Sanchez Flores’s line-up, whether he plays four at the back or five at the back. I didn’t know exactly, we didn’t know. And [Garcia] came after the warm-up and he said to me, ‘They make some movement defensively with four at the back’. Nobody [else] told me that. He was the guy who told me that.

Until summer we’ll continue like this with the people that have been here three years. In the summer we will see what to improve, what not to improve and what will happen

[Guardiola says he has not spoken about losing another member of his staff] From now on he will stay with Rodolfo Borrell, we didn’t have any approach from Arsenal for him

2019 12 21c Retrieve

[Asked if it is possible for a very good team to have a very good season without winning silverware] Of course. [Did] Liverpool [have] a bad season in the Premier League last season? They were fantastic

It’s a disastrous message for the young people […] that you have to be happy just if you win. That is a big, big mistake, because it means [for] the other 19 teams it is a disaster and that is not true. What’s important is what you do and what you tried. I say now and I said when we won titles, I want to win. We are here, everyone, to win. But sometimes life is not always happy, it is not always easy, it is not always winning. The media and the people expect that and [also expect that] everything is just perfect. In a career for any football player or manager, you lose more than you win. So we cannot win all of the time. We cannot be good all the time

2019 12 21d Retrieve

[Quizzed again on a possible extension, the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss said] I think in football one-and-a-half years is a lot of time for a manager. We’ll have to see altogether how it works, what is going on. I’ve said many times how incredibly good it is for me here and of course I would like to stay as much as possible. So that is my desire, but I want to be sure this is the best for the club, that they want me to stay longer. It would be five years at one club and in this competition that is many, many years, so that’s why it’s better to be sure your decision is perfect for both sides. There’s no rush. It’s not finishing in three or four months and the club is working perfectly in all departments, so it’s not a problem, honestly

2019 12 21e Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is keen to avoid losing a second assistant to Arsenal after indicating Rodolfo Borrell still has a big role to play at Manchester City] From now on he will stay with me. We don’t have any approach from Arsenal. Until summer we are going to continue in this way

2019 12 21f Retrieve

[Guardiola praises ‘incredible’ De Bruyne in Man City victory] I am delighted with the way we played. We created a lot and played really good. We kept going forward and played balls so simply. We didn’t want to make every action incredible, playing simple is why the team played good. I enjoyed it much more [than the Arsenal game]. Kevin De Bruyne was incredible tonight - he won the game for us. He has always been incredible since we’ve been together. His commitment is incredible. He’s a spectacular player

2019 12 22 Retrieve

[Guardiola: Thank you so much to the players for following me after Arteta departure] We made an incredible performance with the ball and without the ball. Having Vardy there is always dangerous, but we were always at a high, high level. Thank you so much to the players for following me. We try and convince the players this is the team we want to be. Against a team like Leicester we scored three goals and we could have scored more. That means a lot for the quality and mentality

[Kevin De Bruyne set up Gabriel Jesus for City’s clincher and Guardiola was effusive in his praise for the team’s talisman] We don’t have doubts about Kevin De Bruyne. We cannot expect him to win the game every three days for us. It’s not just with the ball, it’s without. He has everything. We want to play good, help Riyad be clinical. We have to make a fluent attack and today we did

2019 12 22b Retrieve

[Guardiola: It is unrealistic to expect Man City to catch Liverpool in Premier League title race] When a team has 16 victories from 17, it’s unrealistic to think we are going to chase them. It’s unrealistic right now. We have to try to win our games, secure Champions League [qualification] for next season

[Guardiola seemed to convince himself, even if only for a brief moment, that Liverpool can be caught] In football, you never know, no? If [Liverpool] drop points in a couple of games and we win, win and win, I don’t know. When one team loses one game in their last 53, 54 game, I’m not optimistic they are going to lose four or five in 10 or 11 games because they are incredibly strong. So we must relax and play like this and we’ll see in the end what happens. Hopefully Leicester can make a good performance against Liverpool [on Boxing Day] but we’ve to think about our incredibly tough game against Wolves, with Adama Traore and Raul Jimenez

2019 12 22c Retrieve

[City boss said the team’s work ethic against the Foxes allowed Kevin De Bruyne to pull the strings] Against Arsenal he won us the game but today the team won. We cannot expect every three days he will win the game with us so he was incredible. In that position, with the ball and without the ball he has everything and that is what we want

2019 12 23 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says he must prove to himself that he deserves a new contract at Man City before making a decision on his future at the club] I have been here already four seasons at the end of this year and at the end of next year it will be five because I want to be here until then. So it’s a long time. Look what happens, clubs sack their managers week by week. I have answered this many times. I am incredibly good here. To sign a contract I need to see how this works and if I deserve it. The level, we increased a lot in the last years and the expectations are higher, we have to see if we can handle it. It’s not just my decision, the club didn’t talk. Now it’s a little bit of a break with the family for Christmas, then we prepare for Wolves, then we can think about the future

[Guardiola lost his assistant Mikel Arteta last week, with the Spaniard being appointed as Arsenal’s head coach. When asked how City had adapted without his compatriot] I’ve said many times lately, he’s now the manager of Arsenal. We have prepared the last two games without him, tried to readjust how we’ve worked for the last three-and-a-half years, try to adjust the people to do the job he has been doing and work a little bit harder, that’s all

[City will be back in Premier League action when they play Wolves at Molineux on Friday, before welcoming Sheffield United to the Etihad less than 48 hours later] I don’t know exactly [what the minimum time between games should be] but what I know is less than 48 hours is not the perfect time. But all of the time in this country, Christmas time is like this. So we adapt, no problem

2019 12 23b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has called on Manchester City’s supporters to back his side when they are enduring tough moments] I had a feeling always [the fans] are there when we play good, but I want more when we struggle a little bit like at 0-1 [against Leicester]. We need them

The players deserve it [for] what they have done in this period. I need my fans when we concede a goal and we’re playing incredibly well. We need them. Always we cannot play 90 minutes and excel. In the first 10 minutes we were not good, we did not play simple, we lost some balls. We didn’t start to connect again with the game after half-time. But, yes, in the bad moments, Mum and Dad are always with the kids in the bad moments, not in the good ones. We need them when the opponent is good and we are struggling to become a better team. I think the spectators were incredible but we played so good. And when that happens our fans always are behind us

I think it’s unrealistic for a team after 16 games and 17 victories to think we are going to chase them. We have to try to win our games, to be there, to secure qualification for the Champions League next season. And after, in football, you never know. If they drop one game or two games and we win and win and win, I don’t know what will happen. When one team loses one game in the last 53 or 54 I am not optimistic to think they are going to lose four or five games in the next 11 or 12. They are an incredibly strong team. So relax, try to play like [against Leicester] and we will see at the end what will happen

[City are back in action at Wolves on December 27, with the Premier League’s festive calendar putting them back in action less than 48 hours later at home to Sheffield United] I wrote a letter to the Premier League to say thank you. We’re going to the fridge after Wolves to [get ready for] Sheffield

2019 12 23c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola writes letter to Premier League regarding Man City’s fixture schedule] I wrote a letter to the Premier League to say thank you and we are going to the fridge after Wolves to get ready for Sheffield United. [Sunday was] a day off, we are training [on December] 23 and 24. The night of the 24th is off. The morning of the 25th off. Then the 26th training and 27th [play] Nuno’s team.

In football, the season starts when the last one finishes. You don’t have time to rest. We’re going to kill our players. We can give them two or three weeks [holiday] but the schedule is the schedule. I don’t like to complain. I would like to have more time from the beginning. I would like to have more friendly games. Competitions finish so late and start again so early so we have to adapt. It is what it is.

2019 12 23d Retrieve

[Guardiola is concerned racism will ever be stamped out in football or society in general, but it must be tackled on a daily basis] I don’t think so. We have to fight but it will take time, a lot of time, to eradicate it. I think it was a problem which has happened for decades, centuries. But now it’s visualised more because the media is more up front and close to the problem. I think it’s happened a long time, we just have to fight again and again. The little kids, in the schools, on the streets

[Asked if he would support his players walking off the pitch should they receive racist abuse] Of course my players support the initiative and what happened you have to battle day by day. It’s not about one club or one person. It’s about the football world, one vision. It’s a battle you have to fight in the schools, especially, in the families at home to try to make a better society in the future. It’s a battle day by day. All of the initiatives we are going to support and have been supportive

2019 12 24 Retrieve

[City boss Pep Guardiola has also stopped short of making a definitive call on Fernandinho] I think at the end of the season we are going to decide on the situation. The players who finished their contracts, the players with full contracts, what we have to do is what we believe is the best for the club and organisation for next season

2019 12 26 Retrieve

[Guardiola says Man City will not buy David Silva replacement] I don’t think we’re going to do anything in this position, I don’t think we will sign anyone. Maybe I will change my mind, it depends on the next six months, but I have other priorities and I don’t think I’m going to buy because I have enough. Bernardo [Silva] can play there, Phil [Foden] is there, we have [Ilkay] Gundogan, we have Kevin [De Bruyne] so I don’t think we will do anything in this position. That is my thought today, we will see at the end of the season

[Guardiola has not tried to dissuade Silva from leaving, a situation that didn’t apply to City’s last big-name departure, Vincent Kompany] I think when these kind of guys take this decision the decision is taken. I tried to convince Vincent a lot to stay one more year with us - a lot. In the last weeks, I said, ‘no, no, no you are not going to leave me’ but he left me. When these guys take the decision it is taken

2019 12 27 Retrieve

[Guardiola issues desperate Man City rallying cry after Wolves defeat] We can’t give up otherwise we won’t be in Europe. There’s less than 40 hours until we play [at home to Sheffield United]. We have to prepare. Our response is always good; we are used to being top and now we are fighting.

[On the gap to Liverpool] It has been big for a long time. It is not realistic to think about the title race. I have been asked the question for a long time and it is the same answer

[Asked if De Bruyne had been brought off due to the short turnaround before Sunday’s game] We have less than 48 hours for our next game. It is always what it is. We could not defend it at the end, they fought incredibly, ran until the last minute. The goals could have been avoided. They [my players] feel no regrets, they did everything to defend the result

[When asked whether he thought VAR had helped or hindered referee Martin Atkinson, Guardiola was evasive] I don’t know. I didn’t see it. Better not to talk about VAR

2019 12 27b Retrieve

[Guardiola hails Sergio Aguero’s impact at Manchester City] [Replacing Aguero] will be one of the toughest [jobs]. Sergio is irreplaceable. We have another incredible striker in Gabriel [Jesus] and maybe another one will come when Sergio leaves, but he is irreplaceable. The most important moment of this club - more important than when this club hopefully wins the Champions League - is when Sergio scored that goal against QPR. That moment is much better than four titles in one season or whatever and he was the guy. Sooner or later it will happen, he’ll decide when [he leaves]. I’m sure the club will be ready to try to find the guy to replace him, but of course it will not be easy

I’ve never seen such a big star like him be so humble so funny, and it is a joy to work with him and how he accepts my decisions when it sometimes doesn’t work for him. Big stars don’t accept that. I’ve worked with other stars who believe they were bigger than Sergio when they weren’t and they were more difficult to handle and to be with. It’s not easy to find a guy with his status, his personality, what he’s done in his career with his humility and accepting everything perfectly

2019 12 29 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola believes VAR is a big mess every weekend in the Premier League after watching his team defeat Sheffield United 2-0 on Sunday] I said many times I have a huge list for VAR. Every weekend is a big mess. In other games it was a big mess. Hopefully next season it can do better

2019 12 29b Retrieve

[Guardiola has accepted City are no longer realistic contenders for the title] No. It’s unrealistic to think about that. A team which has the numbers of Liverpool, why should we think about that? It’s just preparing, play good and better to be as close to the top of the league as we can, prepare for the knockout competitions and for the next season. Every game helps us to improve for next season. Hopefully we can do better. The motivation is to improve because when we improve we win games and that is the way to live better. That is the best motivation for all of us. Even in the past. Now we recover for three days, thank you for three days to recover, and prepare for the next game against Everton. That is what you have to do

[Guardiola insists it should not take anything away from what his City squad have achieved] The fans can say or do whatever they want but they cannot deny that the team in the last three years was incredible in every single competition. Football you can lose or you can win. We have injuries in very important positions but always we tried, even in the games we lost. It was a tough game especially because of the opponent, because of the 48 hours, and two hours after the Wolves game on the bus back. It’s not the best for recovery against one of the most physical teams in the Premier League and we won it, so full compliments to the team

2019 12 29c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has become the quickest manager to reach 100 wins in the Premier League] It’s a big compliment for the club, players and staff to achieve 100 victories. It’s an incredible achievement for this incredible organisation and big compliments to all the players and staff we had during this period. Of course we are proud of everything in these seasons, the incredible effort. When you think about 100 wins in 134 games it is an incredible achievement. It is nice to be alongside these big teams. It means a lot. Sometimes we lose perspective. But when you have this perspective with how many games you see it. We fight for 100 wins. I am happy especially for the players. They are the reason we won 100 games

2019 12 29d Retrieve

[Forced to play two league games in such quick succession, Guardiola has made no secret of his anger at the domestic competition’s scheduling over the festive season] I don’t have any confidence about that. They don’t care. In the first season it was the same, we played at Anfield and two days later with Burnley at home. My words are not going to change anything, Jose [Mourinho] and Jurgen [Klopp] have said the same. Every season is the same, TV decides and we have to adapt. I have to evaluate the players and how they feel. We have to put fresh legs on. I honestly don’t know how they are going to recover and how they feel, we’ll see

2019 12 29e Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola dismisses the team’s chances of leapfrogging the Anfield side] Like everyone say we are out, we have no chance. We are thinking about ourselves and the next game. To think how many ways to win to be close is a stupid way to think. It’s unrealistic to think about [catching Liverpool]. When a team has the numbers that Liverpool has, why should we think about it, when we are 14 or 17 behind?

2019 12 29f Retrieve

[Guardiola slams Premier League over scheduling] I don’t have any confidence about that. They don’t care. In the first season it was the same, we played at Anfield and two days later with Burnley at home. My words are not going to change anything, Jose [Mourinho] and Jurgen [Klopp] have said the same. Every season is the same, TV decides and we have to adapt. I have to evaluate the players and how they feel. We have to put fresh legs on. I honestly don’t know how they are going to recover and how they feel, we’ll see

The club has made incredible steps with different managers and players and have sustained that. In 10 years they have won four Premier Leagues which isn’t bad. We were incredible for two seasons and in this competition we have lost more in the league than in the previous two seasons. You have to analyse and move forward

2019 12 30 Retrieve

[Sunday’s win was Guardiola’s 100th in just his 134th Premier League game - making him the fastest manager ever to reach such a prestigious landmark tally] What we’ve done in three seasons is incredible. Especially in the Premier League you have to be consistent. We are all delighted with this achievement

2019 12 31 Retrieve

[Guardiola backs ‘incredible’ Ancelotti to succeed at Everton] Everton is Everton, one of the biggest, most traditional, historical teams in England with incredible quality in its players. They struggle a bit this season for points but the quality is there, with a new manager with incredible experience. A manager like Carlo with his incredible capacity, he is one of the smartest guys and always he is able - it doesn’t matter which team he takes, he makes them work. I know him quite well. We played a few times against [each other], not much. His teams always beat our teams. He is an incredible gentleman. He conducted some of the greatest and more experienced teams in Europe, the list is huge. When that happens it’s because you’re an incredible manager. It’s incredible news for English football that he’s back. He can do an incredible job at Everton

[City take on Everton, Port Vale and Manchester United in the first seven days of January and Guardiola said short breaks in between games were making recovery difficult] We have five games in 12 days. ‘s quite similar for the other teams but in this period one or two more days to recover is a lot. We take the risk, it was the same in the last game: 80 minutes with 10 against 11 in a difficult test against Wolves, then we train for two days and come back and play. It’s a risk but you have to take it

2019 12 31b Retrieve

[Guardiola on how Man City can catch Liverpool: Work harder, play better and pray!] Work harder, play better and pray! With all the squad, yes, [City can compete]. There are some things that we cannot control. We can do what we can do. But other issues we cannot control, like what a fantastic team like Liverpool have done so far and other issues. If everybody’s fit, we can do it.

[Guardiola refused to accept, however, that the failure to bring in signings in the previous transfer window had contributed to their problems] No, I think the team is fantastic. I love it. We have had problems with injuries - these things happen - and then Liverpool are incredible. They are the champions of Europe and have dropped two points. After that, we just congratulate them. I know the distance we are [behind] is not what it should be, but it’s what it is

[Guardiola also wanted to offer a reminder of City’s success in 2019 - winning the Premier League, FA Cup, Carabao Cup and Community Shield before slumping to third in the table] How was 2019? Now the people say it was a disaster. We won four titles in 2019. It was an incredible year for us, which we have enjoyed a lot. In some games in this last part of the season, we struggled a little bit. But it was an incredible year for us

2019 12 31c Retrieve

[When asked how his squad are shaping up ahead of a clash with Everton at Etihad Stadium on New Year’s Day] Aymeric Laporte and Leroy Sane (are still injured) - the rest are happy. Laporte is now getting better and training alone, he’s already on the pitch. I don’t know (how long until he’s back) but one week or 10 days then he can train with us. I like to have all the squad available - I don’t like to see players injured. Yes, John Stones and David Silva are back

[Guardiola went on to describe Ancelotti as an incredible head coach] Everton is Everton. One of the biggest historical teams in England with incredible quality of players. With a new manager of incredible quality and capacity of Carlo, he makes them work and has got good results in the last two games, so it is a difficult test

2020 01 01 Retrieve

[Man City boss Guardiola happy with fighting spirit after Everton win] We played great so I am delighted for the guys. This period is so tough. We did really well. Three more points and closer to Leicester. When you are far away from the first position sometimes people give up, but we never give up. We have to keep going. We have FA Cup then the EFL Cup. Other teams dropped points for the top four so it was an important win

2020 01 01b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola thinks Gabriel Jesus is getting better and better for Manchester City - but says Sergio Aguero is irreplaceable] He is young and we cannot forget it, but the way he fights is good and of course he has to improve, but every day he is better and better. What Gabriel has shown in his time here - there have been ups and downs - but he has been excellent. Sergio is irreplaceable. What he means to our fans, for what he has done, the goal against QPR … we need a good backup for all the players and Sergio has a great complimentary player in Gabriel. They have a great relationship. Sergio helped us win the last game, today it was Gabriel

[City’s win over Everton was their sixth in seven games in all competitions after the Manchester derby defeat in early December] We played top, really well. I am delighted with the performance. Being far away from first place after being champions for two years, normally teams give up and finish seventh or eighth, so I am happy

[Against Everton, City lined up with a back three of Rodri, Fernandinho and Eric Garcia, a system which Guardiola seemed pleased with] Maybe we will do it again. In the first half against Sheffield United, we played with three at the back, too. Not just second half. We changed position but the structure was that. We can do it in the future. We played it really well. The five guys are so good with the ball. Riyad [Mahrez] receives the ball in better positions and that helps, too

2020 01 01c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City were the Premier League’s best club of the last decade] I think this club, in the last decade, was the best team. In terms of points, in terms of goals, titles and everything. So I congratulate Manchester City for that. So when we analyse every single day here, what happens day by day, we analyse that, but we have a perspective of what’s happened in 10 seasons. Especially when the people from Abu Dhabi took over the club and bought good players, interesting managers and bigger staff. I think we did it incredibly well. Because fighting with huge elephants here in England, the big clubs with the biggest history, with us in the last decade, we were a part of them, that is amazing

[Guardiola insisted 2019 itself was another successful year for the club] People say ‘how was 2019?’ Now people are saying it is a disaster. We won four titles. In some games in this last part of the year we have struggled but it was an incredible year for us

[Guardiola hopes City can continue its rise and not rest on what it’s achieved] The big clubs in England are always looking forward. We are going to try and analyse not just in terms of the squad but as a club how we can do better. Hopefully in the next decade this club can be here for more time

2020 01 01d Retrieve

[Why 2020 could be the most important year since Man City’s transformation] Congratulations for all the people working here. They were fighting with huge elephants here in England - big, big clubs with the biggest history. For the past decade we were part of them. That is amazing

[A long-term plan needs to come together in the next year] The big clubs here in England are always looking forward, we are going to try and analyse not just in terms of the squad but as a club how we can do better. Hopefully in the next decade this club can be here for more time

2020 01 02 Retrieve

[Gabriel Jesus in race to prove he can be Aguero’s successor at Man City] What Gabriel Jesus has shown so far in the period he’s here - he’s had ups and downs - [but] with his age and the injuries he’s had, he was excellent. He can do perfectly this season with Sergio or without Sergio but Sergio’s irreplaceable for what he means to our fans, what he’s done in this club, for the best moment in the history of this club, an unforgettable moment against QPR, so it’s difficult. Every year is one season more for Sergio and we have a lot of games so we need good back-ups for all the players and Sergio has an excellent complement with Gabriel

[Presently the major difference between Jesus and Aguero: the Buenos Aires native would have claimed a treble. After all, nobody has scored more Premier League hat-tricks than Aguero (11, level with Alan Shearer). However, Guardiola is prepared to give Jesus time to develop his killer instinct] He’s young; we cannot forget it. He’s a guy from Brazil and a young, young lad. Of course, he has to improve and he knows it, we spoke together about what he has to do. Every day he is better and better

2020 01 03 Retrieve

[why Man City want to give Eric Garcia a long-term deal] Busquets was so curious to know that in that age, 17 or 18 - there are not many. In the squad there are people who love to understand the game and talk tactics and others who don’t. That doesn’t mean it’s good or bad. But Eric is a guy who likes to know why. Why? Why the reason why? When he makes a mistake he understands quickly.

He will continue to make mistakes, of course. But when you have a guy who knows how to be stable - it’s important to be stable if you are a central defender, he’s always a seven or eight, not make an incredible performance but not make a lot of mistakes, and Eric in this situation as a young player that is always stable.

[City will be keen to tie Garcia down to a new long-term deal and Guardiola added that it’s only natural to want to talk to a defender who could make his third consecutive start on Saturday against Port Vale] I didn’t speak with Txiki, honestly, but when a player is 18, the club will want to extend the contract but the situation, I don’t know

[a buzz about his performances in the academy and scouting staff knew his qualities when he was at La Masia] I heard something about him he was in the Barcelona academy, he was the captain in all the youth teams, he arrived here and he was immediately a captain. That is how well he has settled in the team because he’s a lovely guy, well-educated, knows exactly what he has to. He’s not every over-exaggerated in his acts, and not shy in the other ones and he’s always calm and incredibly focused. I heard that when he was in Barca, and when I came here, City decided to pick him up and his progress is thanks to the academy coaches

[Guardiola jokes] I’m not a nice guy. He’s comfortable playing on the right foot, not the left. It is not easy but he’s slotted in so well. He’s helped us in this period with a lot of problems

2020 01 03b Retrieve

[Guardiola baffled by John Stones’s fitness struggles] Step by step he’s getting better, he’s still not at the top but he’s good for some minutes for tomorrow. He has to be fit, after two or three games he fell down and he cannot play. We tried to help him, we tried to do the best to help him since the first day of the three and a half years we are here. We do everything for him. He has the conditions to do it, but to be the best central defender you have to play one entire season, every three days being there. It’s difficult to reach the potential that he has, he has to be at the level to play regularly. The last three seasons and a half he could not do it.

It’s difficult to know the reason why. Sometimes when you have a tough injury, for example like Aymeric [Laporte] had this season or [Ilkay] Gundogan in the first season, sometimes it’s unlucky, or [Benjamin] Mendy the year he arrived, first year he arrived. That can happen, you know, it’s unlucky. But in the case of John I don’t know. I don’t know why he is not able, we are not able, to be a regular for a long, long period because he’s a young player.

[Despite his difficulties in 2019, Guardiola still believes that Stones can reach the high standards] He’s still young. As a player he has his future in front of him, it depends on him. It’s in his hands and in his head to become one of the best

2020 01 03c Retrieve

[Guardiola ‘confident’ Fernandinho will sign Man City contract extension] It’s a Txiki Begiristain [City’s director of football] issue, it’s not my issue. Of course I want him to stay. I am so confident [he’ll stay] and I am so delighted about our three and a half years together. He does not have to convince me to stay longer. He convinced me on day one, three and a half years ago when we started to work together. He doesn’t need to do anything special to convince me. It is just [a matter of] his age, his desire and how he is going to finish the season. Many, many things. He knows exactly the opinion we have about him in this club over many, many years. He is one of the greatest players this club has had in its whole history

terday, for the first time he trained with the team for 10 or 15 minutes. The rest individually and he’s getting better. He feels good and in the next weeks I think he will complete all the training sessions with us. I don’t know when he will be ready. He will dictate, it depends on how he feels. He was more than four months out. The day after he trains he cannot [play] 90 minutes. The important thing is he didn’t make a step back in these four or five months, the same cast as with Leroy Sane. That’s really good and we are incredibly grateful for the physios and the guys who worked with him during this time

He is a guy who doesn’t make mistakes. He is so clever and he is intelligent in his movement. It is not easy for him to play on the left side [of the back three against Everton] because he is right-footed. I am not a nice guy, not giving him the opportunity to play on his right foot, but he played so well. He helped us with the problems that we have

2020 01 03d Retrieve

[Man City receive Aymeric Laporte boost as defender resumes training] Yesterday (Thursday) was the first time he had been training 10-15 minutes with the team and today again. The rest [he did] individually and he is getting better. He feels good - I think next week he will complete all the training sessions with us

[Despite that boost, Guardiola is still uncertain over when Laporte will be available for selection] His first-team return? You think about it but I think he will dictate with how he feels, he has been out for four months and needs time so it is not like he can immediately play 90 minutes. What is important is he has not had any setbacks during his time out - the same with Leroy [Sane] - and that is incredibly good. I’m grateful to the physios

[City now turn their attentions to the FA Cup, where Port Vale lie in wait] It’s a knockout game, anything can happen. The schedule has been incredible, to not have to travel and play at home will be a big advantage. I’ve said many times we try to take every competition seriously

2020 01 04 Retrieve

[Guardiola insists young players deserved their FA Cup chance] Of course, it is important [to have local young players] with Taylor and Phil - and Tommy. [Doyle] played a month ago in the Carabao Cup and played a few minutes today. It’s not because they are English - we believe they can do it because they are good players. We don’t give presents. They have to earn [it] for themselves. In these games, we have space for everyone. But from what we have seen so far, they have the quality to help. Young players have to not talk too much, to train, to work and to listen and learn and learn and learn. They have to learn. The minutes are good for their development, and then the future is in their hands. The privilege for them has to be in this club and playing minutes with this team

[City invited Vale into their dressing room post-match] It was a pleasure. I saw the manager and the sporting director. It’s nice for us to host these clubs and for their players to realise we are the same. We play at a different level but dreams are dreams

We are in the next round after an incredible amount of games. We played seriously. In the first half we struggled a bit, but the second half was better. I think in general the team did okay. Our game was there all the time. In the Premier League we are far away, we have to focus on taking second position. In the other comps we go game by game

2020 01 05 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola believes Manchester United are one of the best teams in Europe when they’re allowed to run] Of course in Old Trafford it will be quite different to here but it is a team that is built to run. When they can run it is one of the best teams not just in England, I would say, because of the pace they have, James or [Mason] Greenwood right now and Martial, Rashford and [Jesse] Lingard.

I saw the line-up they make before the game against Wolves and they make a lot of changes so I guess they will be focused but they are two games, we have to go there to try and take a good result to the second leg here with our people, our fans to reach three years in a row the final of the competition.

I have the feeling they are going to run, one or two or three or as many times as possible and we have to reduce the mistakes in the build-up, be prepared for that. But we have to do our game so I am not going to prepare our game just thinking don’t let them run so we have to go there, try to score a goal, we play our game and try to get a good result from there.

I would like to play in Old Trafford most of the park except the first minutes we concede three or four times they could run, the rest of the game I like a lot the game we played the chances we create in many situations so I would like to play quite similar but we don’t have much too time but we have two days and a half to train and prepare the game we want to do after we have a bit of a break, five days to the next games

2020 01 05b Retrieve

[Guardiola said ahead of the game that John Stones must play regularly if he is to become the truly world-class defender] He was one month injured with not a good history in the past about that so it is not easy. It is important is to get minutes, finish well and play good. Now it is time to be ready, especially mentally, and not to get injured. That is the most important thing

2020 01 06 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has aimed a subtle dig at Manchester United ahead of their derby date in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday] When you play games for many years sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Against United, a top club, you can win and lose games. I didn’t come here and expect to beat Man United all the time. We’ve beaten them more than we lose in the regular season. That is important

I have the feeling that they’re starting to play the way he wants. Even the last game against Arsenal we saw clearly what he wants. It’s not easy to take over a big big club that’s always demanding to be involved in the competition

[When asked to reveal what he learned from the last derby meeting with United] How fast they are. How solid and aggressive. We conceded a few counterattacks and in just a few seconds they were in the box

2020 01 06b Retrieve

[Guardiola says he could continue with three central defenders even when he has his full squad fit as it gives his full-backs the opportunity to get forward more frequently] In some games [it’s been] good, in some not good, it’s nice to have alternatives, especially for the quality of the players we have. Especially in the back to adapt better, to control the build up, to control better the counter-attacks, to have more passes, that’s the idea. It’s a way we can play with the full-backs that we have, especially Mendy, Kyle Walker, Joao Cancelo and Angelino.

2020 01 06c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola insists he would rather retire to the golf course than coach Manchester United or Real Madrid in the future] After training City I won’t train United. It is like I would never train Madrid. Definitely not

[Asked if he would reconsider if they were the only jobs open to him] I’d be in the Maldives if I don’t have any offers! Maybe not the Maldives because it doesn’t have any golf courses!

[Ole swatted away the attack, saying Van Persie doesn’t know anything about his management style and Guardiola praised his opposite number for being his own man] Ole is who he is. If he wants to smile, it’s perfect, if he wants to conduct the team in that way, why should he change? Everyone is everyone. Some are more expressive, others are calm, others shout more on the touchline, others sit. Who is better? The guy who wins the last weekend. That is the best manager. If you react in that way it’s perfect, that’s the way he is. That’s all. That is not debatable. I’m pretty sure when he doesn’t win he’s sad and if wins he is happy. It’s normal. If he wants smile, what’s the problem? If he wants to shout what’s the problem?

[However, at the Etihad Stadium the Catalan has a mixed record in the league, with a draw and two defeats - including a 2-1 loss last month] We play the first leg away. We have to try to play good to get a good result for the second leg at home. In games when you play your opponent many times, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Against a top club like United you can win and you can lose games. I didn’t expect when we arrived here to win all the time against Man Utd. We beat them more times than we lose

2020 01 06d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is eager to avoid putting Phil Foden in the same bracket as David Silva] If Phil can have the career [of] David, it will not be really bad. It is better for Phil not to be compared for that legend and an incredible player like David. But he is growing, in every game his influence in the game is growing so he is playing in a high level but David won leagues and World Cups with the national team, playing millions of games, millions of assists but for the age that Phil has the perspective is so positive

[Taylor Harwood-Bellis was another emerging talent to figure for City against Port Vale, with the 17-year-old selected ahead of 18-year-old Eric Garcia] He played 45 minutes, 90 minutes and 90 minutes in the time before two or three games. It was too much to play again. I didn’t think about the game on Tuesday. Of course, for this competition, it was important everybody plays. We are going to start to think about the way we want to play and the best players I think to play in Old Trafford for the first leg of the semi-final of the Carabao Cup

2020 01 07 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Leroy Sane ‘close’ to Man City return after five months out with knee ligament damage] I think he is close. I spoke with him two days ago and he said to me he is training alone with the ball, he is doing incredibly well. His knee looks really good so I don’t think it is going to take too much time to come back to train with us. I think in the next few weeks he can come back

[Pressed on whether Sane’s setback was worse than Aymeric Laporte 9484afd5836d307b314a404d745a9a68, who also damaged knee ligaments] It’s different. Both are serious. But I think he is in the last stages

2020 01 08 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola insists the Carabao Cup semi-final has not been settled despite Manchester City’s dominant 3-1 win over Manchester United on Tuesday] The first minutes were tight, they had one or two counter-attacks, but the first shot or second shot was an outstanding goal from Bernardo Silva. After, we played really good, with a lot of passes, arriving from behind. In the second half, they changed the shape, the diamond 4-4-2 and we struggled a little bit more to keep the ball. But yeah, a good result. It’s not over, because it’s United, and we see how many times, last season was a good example against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League. They are able to score goals. Hopefully, with our fans, we can make a good game and reach the final again

[Guardiola said he set up his side to avoid the kind of counter-attacking damage United did in their 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League last month] It’s always difficult to control Rashford and all the people in front because they are so fast, and that was the main target today, with a lot of passes. We feel comfortable with the ball and we did it

[Guardiola also bristled at the suggestion City invited United back into the contest by relaxing too much after half-time] Always we have to accept the result. We played against United - what do you expect? One, 7-0 here, or what? They played good, they changed their situation and we could not control quite as well, especially Mason Greenwood between the lines, we struggled a little bit with that, but in general it was an incredible performance. We played at Old Trafford, against our rivals, in a semi-final, and it was a fantastic result for us

2020 01 10 Retrieve

[Guardiola leaves Leroy Sane future call in the hands of German winger & Man City board] It’s a question for Leroy, his agents and the club. I am not involved. What’s important now is that he recovers well. After that, he knows what we believe in him, what we think of him and the rest is up to him and the club

[Pressed further on whether it would be awkward to have a player on his books that wants out] It’s not awkward because I can’t see him on the pitch. He is a nice person, I know him quite well. I was the guy who pushed the club and asked him to come here. But each one has his own family, desires and dreams. Where you are three years ago is not the same as where you are now. I want him to come back fit now. His knee looks really good but after that, it’s not my business. His own future is not in my hands

[Another of those that Guardiola is waiting on to return from a serious knee injury is Aymeric Laporte] Aymeric Laporte’s training every day, he feels no pain and after training he feels good, I don’t know when he’ll be ready to play some minutes. I’m not the doctor, what I see on the pitch is he moves well, his movement, for four or five months, he’s not a small guy like [Raheem] Sterling, who recovers quick, but he moves really well and we’ll see what the doctor says about when he’s going to play. I want all the players back for their specific qualities, Leroy makes those incredible runs. Aymer for his left foot, playing the left side, how good he’s settled, of course it’s important for us, you have to respect the process and when both are ready they’ll be in contention and thinking about when to use them

2020 01 11 Retrieve

[Guardiola wary of overhyping Man City’s youngsters] I don’t know. I would like to answer and say ‘yes’ but I don’t know. To figure out if young players will become incredibly top players for the future, I don’t know. This is a club that is so demanding, you have to win games. Sometimes you win four titles and it’s not enough. Four titles last season is not enough; we didn’t win the Champions League. That is the reality.

Sometimes they compete against incredible central defenders and, for Tommy Doyle, incredible midfielders. For Phil Foden, it is an incredible reality. He is an exceptional player and sometimes he doesn’t play the minutes he should play because he competes with what happened at Old Trafford. All the midfield players played and they played incredibly well. I am a big, big fan who respects the process with the young guys. But we have a tendency in all the countries - here as well - that they make the two games and already they will be the new [Wayne] Rooney or the new George Best or will be the new David Beckham

We cannot deny how important all these names you name have been for this club. Vinny is unique, Sergio will be unique, David - these type of players are incredible. I think the club, they have the duty and the obligation to find the best replacement for all of them, as quick as possible and anticipate it. We have to try and find them or build them from here - it is our obligation as a club

David Silva is going to leave this season and we are not going to buy any player in his position because we have Phil. Maybe this season Phil will have more minutes, or maybe less. I don’t know. We trust Phil. If we didn’t believe in him we might go to the market to replace David, but we have Phil

2020 01 11b Retrieve

[Guardiola not relishing Man City rebuild ahead of big summer transfer window] In the summer, we will have time to [add new players]. We have some ideas but also [it depends] on the players. The players you believe you want to stay might knock on the door and say ‘I want to leave’. So that is going to happen at the end of the season

[Pressed on whether he is looking forward to that challenge] No. I was excited to build the team when I arrived, when we had to do a lot of changes. Now, we have to do it again but in an absolutely different way.

[Guardiola has found a place for English talent within his Man City squad] When you see the English national team, you say ‘wow, what a team’. Gareth (Southgate) has incredible solutions at the back, in the middle and up front. They are a fantastic group and generation of football players. English football is getting better and better every season. I think English football has to be so proud about the quality of football they play and the players they have. It is nice to watch a Premier League game.

From holding midfield to up front, you say ‘wow’. There are 12 or 14 players who could play in the important teams in Europe without a problem. They have fantastic players and talented young players for the next decade. If they take care of themselves, they can have big success for English football for the next decade

2020 01 11c Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on whether he would ever manage Manchester United] After training City I will never train them; I would not train [Real] Madrid [after Barcelona]. I’d be in the Maldives if I don’t have any offers. Maybe not the Maldives because it doesn’t have any golf courses

2020 01 11d Retrieve

[Guardiola full of praise for ‘incredible’ Sergio Aguero as Man City star looks to equal Thierry Henry’s Premier League record] He’s a guy in the box with a sense of goal. He can score from everywhere, in all the positions. He’s an incredible striker, incredible. That he will score more goals than a legend like Thierry Henry is an incredible achievement - many, many goals.

[Guardiola added on the challenge a historic club like Villa will pose his side this weekend] You have to play all the teams - sometimes at the top, sometimes the middle and sometimes the bottom. They’re a historic club with a fantastic stadium. They’ve changed, in the last games, their set-up and played more five than four at the back, maybe because of the absences with big injuries they’ve had. We’ll try to maintain the dynamic we have

I didn’t know him before I came here but he is an exceptional player

2020 01 11e Retrieve

[Guardiola: Aymeric Laporte feels good but not ready for Man City return] He’s training every day, he feels good after training and the day after he feels good, that is good news. I don’t know when he’ll be ready to play some games. He needs a little bit more time but he moves really well. The operation was good. We wait for the doctors to say he can start to play

[Guardiola is also eager to have Leroy Sane available again] When we need to make movements in behind, Leroy is the best and of course Aymeric for being left footed, playing the left side and how good and how quick he settled in this league since he arrived. Of course it’s important for us, we will have to respect the process and when both will be ready, I will have to be thinking about to use them, we use them when I believe they must be used

2020 01 12 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has heralded Sergio Aguero as not just a hero on the field but an incredible person off it] Thierry Henry is a legend and a legend rose tonight. Henry is one of the most incredible players to play in this league and he will be proud that Sergio is they guy who broke his record. He was a legend and Sergio is the same. To score this amount of goals means you have done a lot of good things for many years. He’s been consistent for many years and so we are proud of him

[Guardiola said Aguero’s loyalty to his colleagues was at the root of the former Atletico Madrid man’s success] He is the most incredible person. You don’t achieve what he has if you don’t love to be with your mates. And, when he gets into the final third, he knows where the goal is. You cannot achieve these records without being a guy who knows where the goal is

[They are still 14 points behind leaders Liverpool, who have a game in hand] We are second in the table and for a long time we were not there so we will try and maintain this position

2020 01 12b Retrieve

[Guardiola laughs off Aguero comparison] The best is Messi. Messi is [the best] number nine, number 10, number 11, number seven, number six, number five, number four […] But Sergio, [among] the rest, he is certainly one of them. I said many times, he will die scoring goals. It is his talent

[Guardiola expressed sympathy with Ernesto Valverde who has won La Liga in each of his two full seasons in charge] Barcelona is a special place, because winning the league is not enough. I am so sorry for Ernesto Valverde. I think he doesn’t deserve that. Hopefully we can solve it soon, as an associate of this club

2020 01 12c Retrieve

[Guardiola confirms Phil Foden will replace David Silva at Man City next season] Phil is an incredible player but he still has things to improve. Sometimes it takes time to understand exactly what he has to do, sometimes you have to be patient. But David is going to leave this season and we are not going to buy any player in his position because we have Phil. We trust Phil. If we didn’t believe in him, we might go to the market to replace David, but we have Phil

I would like to help the young players here but this is a club that is so demanding. You have to win games. Even when you win four titles here it isn’t enough - and that is the truth. We won four titles last season and it wasn’t enough because we didn’t win the Champions League. That is the reality - and the young players here have to compete against incredible central defenders and incredible midfielders. It is a tough reality that exceptional players like Phil Foden don’t play the minutes they should because we have other incredible players

2020 01 12d Retrieve

[Fernandinho was the last to leave the pitch at Old Trafford following Manchester City’s Carabao Cup destruction of neighbours United] He didn’t have to convince me. He convinced me on day one of the three years together. He knows the opinion we have about what he’s done at the club. He’s one of the greatest players this club has had in its whole history

2020 01 13 Retrieve

[Guardiola has denied that he tells his side to prioritise the tactical foul] We are a team that try to play and, of course, when there is a counter-attack sometimes the contact, the action is a foul but as a team we don’t think about that. Never have my teams been focused on doing something wrong against the opponents. Sometimes situations happen but we are a team that always try to attack, to defend well, to try to play our game but never having to think about making actions like that

2020 01 17 Retrieve

[Guardiola not interested in Liverpool v Man Utd clash] The reality is we are far away. We accept the reality - they’ve won 20 games and they’d be leading all the leagues around the world, not just our league. It would be nice to be focused on Zaha, Ayew and Crystal Palace. And then Tuesday we have Sheffield United. Being so far away means it’s not interesting to look at what Liverpool do. It’s better to focus on what we can improve for the rest of the season in the Premier League and other competitions

[Guardiola said his side could have folded] What happens to champions, the year after when they didn’t have the challenge to be champions? They give up. They finish 12th or 10th or fifth and don’t qualify for the Champions League. But still we are fighting - far away because the opponent is exceptional. That is an incredible compliment for my players and I’m incredibly proud of them for this detail. Now we are second and we must win the next one and the next one to secure qualification for the Champions League next season

2020 01 17b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has insisted that he will stay at Manchester City for the for at least one more full season] I say many times, unless the club sack me, I’m going to stay 100 per cent. For sure, 100% I’m going to stay here next season. Not because we won the last two games or playing better the last few months. I enjoy working with them and I like it, but even if it’s going bad and we are not in the Champions League, I will not leave. As a manager, there are good and bad moments, you don’t win all the time. But it’s all about what we can do next and how we can improve

[Guardiola thinks Riyad Mahrez is benefitting from an extended run in the team] Yeah [he is playing well], especially because he plays regularly. The players need it; everybody needs rhythm and now he’s playing quite often. In front of goal he is clinical and when he gets the ball I feel he is going to score a goal. It’s a nice feeling for him, too

2020 01 17c Retrieve

[Premier League refs told to start using pitch-side VAR monitors] It is a positive move. The referee will be taking responsibility himself. I like that

2020 01 17d Retrieve

[Man City boss Guardiola brushes off Stones to Arsenal rumours] I am not going to talk about rumours about our players or other players. We are going to buy 500 million players? I’m not going to answer about that

2020 01 17e Retrieve

[When asked if he had any positive new on Leroy Sane’s recovery, the Spanish tactician told a press conference on Friday] Definitely. Leroy is still not training with us but everything going really really well and he should be training with us in another week.

[Guardiola went on to praise 72-year-old Roy Hodgson for his passion] Of course I admire him, it is incredible to still have the passion to be a manager at his age. It’s incredible and he’s doing really well and yet he took over when they had zero points and everyone considered Crystal Palace relegated. He is doing an incredible job and it’s a pleasure and an honour for me every time we face him, we have a good z relationship. I am interested in other things and I think I am going to do them when I am not a manager but I enjoy being a manager. If I still like it and have an offer and still have the passion, and I’m comfortable, then yeah. I didn’t say I’m going to retire the next week or the next year. I don’t think I will still be a manager at this age but I don’t know.

2020 01 18 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on whether Sergio Aguero was the best striker he has ever coached] The best is [Lionel] Messi. Messi is number 9, number 10, number 11, number 7, number 6, number 5, number 4. But Sergio [Aguero], [of] the rest, is absolutely one of them.

2020 01 18b Retrieve

[Guardiola slams Man City defending in Crystal Palace draw] We have to avoid the mistake we have made on the second goal. Just do not allow Wilfried Zaha to run, it’s that simple. And we allowed it. No [it was not a loss of concentration], it was a decision. Concentration was always there. We are going to solve it and improve it. In those positions we need to have the back four there and not let them run on this counter-attack

[At the end of his forlorn pursuit of Zaha, Stones appeared to jar a knee but Guardiola could not offer a fitness update] I didn’t see the doctors. Now we are going to see

[Guardiola gave a weary response to a question over whether the title race was still alive] I answered the question millions of times in the past few weeks. Maybe I will watch it, maybe I will see Sheffield United. I don’t know

2020 01 19 Retrieve

[Even Guardiola can’t hide his frustration with Man City’s weak defence] We have to avoid the second goal. It is a mistake we have done and we have to avoid it. In this situation, at 2-1, it is just not allowed that Wilfried Zaha runs. It’s simple. But we allowed them and we conceded a goal

[Full-back Joao Cancelo was caught out of position against Zaha. John Stones allowed him to run into the box at speed. Fernandinho turned the ball into his own net as he tried to stop Connor Wickham] It was a wrong decision and we are going to solve it and improve in that position. We have to. The back four there has to not let them run. In this situation we cannot let them run in this counter-attack

The spirit was there, we tried and we came back and it’s a pity in the end to drop two points in this way

2020 01 20 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes that a punishing fixture schedule may have contributed to the injuries that have left Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford in a race to be fit for Euro 2020] It’s a big blow for the national team. Kane and Rashford are incredibly important players for them. Hopefully they can recover. It’s an incredible amount of games. Now we’re talking about it because they are [injured], but looking back at the injuries Newcastle have had, we have had, all the teams. That is normal. With that number of games, players break down. I’m not surprised. I’m so sorry for them. The big administration people cannot complain because it’s normal this happens. Of course it is too much to expect. They arrive in the Euros, playing with the national teams trying their best, then [back here] after no more than 20 days because the show must go on. It’s unsustainable. The players fall down. It’s too much.

All the managers complained about it and they don’t care. Now Boxing Day is over, another season, and prepare for the next one. A distance of two or three days again and again. The players suffer. They want to do well and the clubs have a lot of pressure to win or qualify for the Champions League. We push and push. The body says stop, it’s enough

[on Raheem Sterling’s injury] He played more than 3,000 minutes, his standards are continuing quite similar, maybe he hasn’t scored in the last games but there are no doubts. Normally when one guy is always and then one game he isn’t there people say ‘what’s happened?’

2020 01 20b Retrieve

[Guardiola wants fixtures reduced amid talks of Champions League expansion] I think the solution is you have to make a year of 400 days, that is a solution, 400 or 500, more or less. After that we can book another competition. Maybe UEFA or FIFA can talk about it. We have few days a year, that’s the problem

Eliminate competitions. Take them out completely - so less games. Less games, less competitions, less teams, more quality, less quantity. The people are going enjoy it. The people are going to go to the theatre, to the cinema, restaurants, to watch the fireworks. That is what they would do

There are less games [in Germany in Spain], much less than here. In the Bundesliga there are 18 teams not 20, one cup not two. They have a break, in Spain they have a break.Tthe cup is run with one game, not two. So it’s a big difference. It’s just to protect the players […] For them they’d enjoy it more, the people too. People say they can’t live without football, they can live without football for a while. It’s too much, honestly

2020 01 20c Retrieve

[Guardiola said that all his squad must show their desire and quality between now and the end of the season] At the same time that my bosses have one eye to see if I deserve to continue here, in my eyes I have to control my players and how their performance deserves to be here. There is no other solution. I have an idea what we need. We speak quite often with the club. There are still four months and it depends on that. We are going to take a decision. Everything is related to the performance, not about the contract we have or what we are. [You have to] perform your best

[Guardiola insists the goal should not have happened but said that the criticism of John Stones was unfair] We are there [for him], I am there. There are ups and downs in your career so you have to be strong. We know his quality

2020 01 20d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Liverpool are extraordinary but I am only focused on improving Man City] In terms of what we are as a team, we are open, we accept. We cannot deny it - the Liverpool team is extraordinary in terms of football, in terms of results. But every day I live almost 24 hours thinking about my team and what we are, what we are doing, what we can do better. I’m not too much distracted by other teams in other leagues or, in this case, Liverpool

We concede few, but the opponents score goals from a few chances. That is difficult to solve. We have to improve in this area. We have scored I don’t know how many more goals than Liverpool [12], so our way is good. I don’t have the statistics here, but I don’t think we concede more chances in one game. From the few, we concede goals that we shouldn’t and drop points. You start from Tottenham in the first game, they shoot twice in the half on target and score two goals. Norwich shoot three times and score three goals. When this happens, it’s difficult to fight against this Liverpool. We have to improve in this area

[The Spaniard felt criticism of John Stones after the Palace game, in which he appeared to struggle against Wilfried Zaha, was harsh] It was unfair, yeah. We are there, I am there. Ups and downs in the career, the football manager always has to be strong. We know his quality

2020 01 20e Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Aymeric Laporte won’t solve all of Manchester City’s problems when he returns to the first-team fold] We cannot expect Aymeric to solve all of the problems. After four or five months he will need time so he will not be ready immediately to do it. He is very important. The way we play, his left foot is needed so it will be good to have him back central. I think City will do much better

2020 01 21 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has suggested that no Manchester City player is safe ahead of a summer overhaul in the transfer market] I have an idea of what we need. We speak quite often with the club. There are still four months [to go] and it depends on that. We are going to take a decision. Everything is related to the performance, not about the contract we have or what we are. For me as a manager, [I’m] being observed and it’s the same for the players

2020 01 21b Retrieve

[Manchester City beat Sheffield United 1-0 at Bramall Lane] We knew it would be a difficult place to come. We concede one or two clear chances, nothing more than that. In the first half, the keeper was excellent with the penalty and two incredible saves, it was an incredibly good victory for us to take a step towards securing Champions League football next season. In the first half we were a little bit shy to play, but in the second half we were a little bit more like we are. But we controlled it really well, the chance to score goals. What Sheffield United do, they do it perfectly. They’ve been together for five years so their spirit is so good. They are so good at the second balls and arrive with a lot of people in the final third

2020 01 22 Retrieve

[Without Laporte since the end of August, this season’s challenge has collapsed. They have conceded 27 goals already - four more than the entirety of the 2018-19 campaign, and almost double the total of runaway leaders Liverpool] We have missed [Laporte] a lot; it’s incredible. ‘s the best left-central defender in the world. Imagine the best teams in the world losing their best central defender

He has something that we don’t have in the squad - his left foot and many actions that make [our play] quicker and better. We don’t have it without him, not because the other defenders are not good, but he has the only left foot as a central defender and for the way we want to play, that is so important. His character and mentality and winning - he has all the attributes

2020 01 22b Retrieve

[Guardiola: Ederson is Man City’s best penalty taker] Definitely. I have to reflect on it. I always have the confidence in the players to take it, but I have to reflect on maybe how they take the decision on who will take it. Not [just] for Gabriel today, because Sergio missed two and Raheem missed one and a half against Wolves [a twice-taken, twice-saved penalty, with Sterling netting the rebound from the second]. We are not safe. In that level it’s so important, it makes the difference most of the time. I have to take a decision with the guys over who is going to take the penalty

Ederson is the best. Believe me, Eddie is the best taker we have on the penalties. He has no blood in his brains, he’s so calm, so he could do it

I heard them [the fans] chanting my name, asking me to take the penalty, but Gabriel went there. Unfortunately he missed it and Bernardo, fortunately, scored, but if the manager had asked me to go there, I would have definitely scored. I’m not sure if I would be able to do set-pieces, but I’m good at penalties, either using power or technique when I’m shooting. City have their regular penalty takers and we have good options, but if Pep asks me to take it, I’m there. Hopefully it will happen. I’d like to score

2020 01 23 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says David Silva in Man City’s top five of all-time greats] I’d only say that he has to be proud for all that he has achieved in football because he has been consistent and, especially at this club, he will be always remembered as one of the biggest, biggest, biggest players ever to wear the Man City shirt. If we’re talking about the top five, David is one of them, and I don’t say that lightly

[The current City boss added on a man who has remained dedicated to his craft throughout a memorable career] He’s not interested in giving interviews, social media, Twitter, Instagram, any of that. And it seems like people like David get less recognition than people who do that all day. But I’ll tell you something that he does have, and that’s the respect of his fellow professionals - of his team-mates, his rivals, his managers, managers he’s played against. And he has earned all of that. Some have all the respect outside but inside the changing room they have none. David is exactly the opposite and that’s the best legacy he could have

2020 01 24 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Liverpool can break record of Man City’s centurions] Yeah it can happen. Records are there to be broken. We broke it when someone said we couldn’t and sooner or later it will be broken again. History speaks clearly about that. It is not easy to beat Liverpool, they have found a way to win games

Eric Garcia, it is impossible. I think Taylor Harwood-Bellis is going to stay until the end of the season. I don’t know if there were any offers from the Premier League. If Harwood-Bellis had a loan offer, maybe we would consider it for his development

2020 01 24b Retrieve

[Is Man City goalkeeper Ederson the answer to Pep’s penalty problem?] I have to reflect on it. I always give confidence to the players to take it but maybe I have to take the decision which guy is going to take it. In the [Champions League] knockout stages, it’s so important because these kind of details make the difference most of the time. We have to think about it. I have to make the decision on the guy who will take the penalty

2020 01 25 Retrieve

[Guardiola on The countdown to David Silva’s departure] I’ll tell you something that he does have, and that’s the respect of his fellow professionals - of his team-mates, his rivals, his managers, managers he’s played against. And he has earned all of that

That definition, that he’s a bit of a b*stard, is the perfect definition by Jose Luis Mendilibar. You can tell he learned his football on the street, like he’s threatening ‘There’ll only be one winner here.’ David has that in him and you don’t realise it until you get to know him

2020 01 26 Retrieve

[Guardiola eyes Man Utd showdown after FA Cup victory] For a few moments, I thought it would be a tough game. They’re a team with a lot of courage but it was a bit different after the red card. They still tried to play but the game was over at 3-0. The determination was always there and we will fight to win each competition. Always we score goals and have the ability to score. The problem this season has been conceding some goals, but it’s always good to score goals

Next is United and a chance to get to the final and that is our next target

2020 01 27 Retrieve

[Guardiola calls for greater Man City support after FA Cup win] Today was not full - I don’t know why. [Wednesday] is a chance to come back to Wembley for three years in a row. Hopefully our fans can come, more people than today. Hopefully they can support us more and make an intelligent game to reach the final

I think today the spectators were incredible. We played so good. When that happens, our fans are always behind us. I have the feeling they are there when we play good. But we need them. The players deserve it. I need my fans when we concede a goal but have played incredibly well. We need them. We can’t always play 90 minutes perfect. Inside the first ten minutes we were not good. We lost some balls. We didn’t play simple. We didn’t start to connect again after the half-time break. In the bad moments, we need them. When the opponent is good, we need them to be a better team

2020 01 27b Retrieve

[Man City must focus on cup triumphs to maintain Guardiola’s winning mentality] When you win, you take a shower and then you want to win the next one and the next. It makes your life better and easier. Winning helps to win more and it helps to make this club better

The determination is for the next one - the Carabao Cup second leg to get to the final. That is the target

2020 01 29 Retrieve

[Guardiola aims sly dig at Klopp’s FA Cup snub: I won’t diss the humble competition] People say we are complacent about what we have won. You don’t try to diss the humble competition of the season, if you are not able to do it [win the Premier League] three times in a row with big games in the Premier League and Champions League and everyone there. When you win a lot, they say this competition does not matter, but with me this does not happen. It doesn’t matter, we try to do it. Being at Wembley with a historic team like Aston Villa, we are happy to be there

2020 01 29b Retrieve

[Guardiola: Solskjaer is on right path to restore Man Utd to former glory] I like the way they play a lot. The quality of players up front is incredible. I said before when we lost at home, I have the feeling they are trying to do what the manager wants. I think it works. Maybe they are not consistent. Maybe at home they struggle against the teams who defend deep. I think in time they will come back to what United was for many, many years. [Nemanja] Matic and Fred are incredible players. Matic was outstanding

They played really well in both games. We were fantastic, we concede the goal from the only time they shot. We were solid and we create enough chances to score a lot of goals. The same at Old Trafford, we created even more chances [tonight] but didn’t convert; we have to learn from that to be more clinical. Of course, we have to take the chances we have, the clear chances

2020 01 29c Retrieve

[Guardiola right to row back on Man City empty stadium comments] Hopefully more people can come than today, hopefully [they] can support us more. I don’t know the reason why, but it was not full

[Guardiola did at least row back on on his comments ahead of Wednesday’s game, insisting that he understood the difficulties that fans have] First of all, of course I understand it. Never was it my intention to offend them. They are part of us. But since I arrived here from day one until the last day what I want is to fight and play as good as possible to see the Etihad Stadium full every single game. It belongs to us to play good to seduce them to come because the only reason why we do our job and I do my job is not for the titles, it’s to go to the Etihad Stadium and see it is absolutely full with people, together, enjoying games. But of course I understand it’s difficult for the people to do that

[Guardiola has in the past urged fans to do everything to support City in the Champions League and to put their indifference to the competition behind them] We try to do our best to let them be proud of our team but I will try it again to push them to be with us as much as possible. If it is possible to be every single game full, full, full, it will be better because it’s the sense to do something for our people and I know how to appreciate them because I know how many people come when we play away. I know them, we feel them, they chant and it is so nice to have them outside and I know for them it’s not easy, that is why I will always be grateful to the support

2020 01 30 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola was quick to stress that his side dominated the two matches against Manchester United in Carabao Cup semi-final] Today we met an incredible, physical side. Their goal was a set-piece and the first time they shot on target. In the second half they shot once and no more than that. I am really pleased. For the 180 minutes we played in both games, we were better. I am so satisfied with the way we played and with the problems we have in the back four, with the injuries we have. I’m very pleased to be in the final for a third year in a row. When people talk about complacency because of what we have won; we would not be able to make the final three years in a row.

Normally when you win a lot, this competition doesn’t matter. That’s never happened with my team. We can lose, but it [complacency] will never happen. It’s never happened in my eleven or twelve years as a manger. I am incredibly delighted for all of us because it doesn’t matter what competition we play, we try to win. I’m happy to be at Wembley against a historical team like Aston Villa.

2020 01 30b Retrieve

[Guardiola defends Ed Woodward after Man Utd official’s house attacked] I don’t like it. I don’t like what happened with Ed Woodward at home. You see the squad for United, it’s really good. Honestly, it’s really good. So that is not the way to do that. When you talk about what happened [City fans making plane gestures], I didn’t know it. If it would happen, that is not nice. Absolutely not

[United’s win was their second in as many months at the Etihad StadiumI like a lot the way they played. I said when we lost here [in December], they don’t need much. The quality of the players up front is incredible. When we lost at home against them, I had the feeling they are trying to do what the manager Ole wants and I think it works. Maybe they are not consistent in all the games, maybe at home they are struggling a little bit against teams that defend deep. But I like the way they play, their qualities. [Victor] Lindelof, I saw it in Benfica, is an incredible player, [Harry] Maguire is one of the best central defenders in the world. The people up front, they are so fast. Matic and Fred, they’re incredible players. Matic is an outstanding player. I think if you give them time, they will come back to what United was for many, many years

2020 01 31 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho face each other on Sunday with an increasing respect for each other] I’m sorry for you [journalists]. I know you were looking forward [to it] but I’m sorry. Maybe we are older and more experienced. I know every time when we played when he was at United, always the people weren’t talking about how we are going to play or how he is going to play, who is going to win, it was just about my press conference. Did I say something or did he say something and after do it and after you are happy. But I’m sorry, I told you, it didn’t happen

Periods for managers are up and down, everyone has it. You have seasons with good and bad periods, you have to change teams and build things. For 15 or 20 years Jose has been there all the time and that must be respected, from my point of view. Because I think it’s the most difficult thing - to stay for a long time and to be there all the time. When you win a lot of titles and then the moment you don’t people think, ‘Ah it’s not good’. The exception is when you win a lot. Normally In sport you lose more than you win. Michael Jordan is the greatest example of this. He won six NBA titles in 15 or 16 seasons, so they lost more than they won and he was the greatest athlete I’ve ever seen in my life, so you try keep going and work hard and that’s all

[Guardiola won the war in Manchester but recognises a tough opponent] Always I had incredible respect for what he’s done for football and in his career, always. Sometimes a situation happens and it’s part of our job but that’s all

2020 01 31b Retrieve

[Leroy Sane is expected to leave the club to return to his native Germany to join Bayern] It’s a question for Leroy Sane, his agents and the club. I am not involved. What’s important now is that he recovers well. After that, he knows what we believe in him, what we think of him and the rest is up to him and the club

2020 01 31c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola remains optimistic when it comes to tying Leroy Sane to a new contract at Manchester City] I don’t have any new news, I’m sorry. I would like to tell you but […] You have to ask Txiki [Begiristain]. The last info I had was that we made him an offer a long time ago and all the time he didn’t reject it, so after that I don’t have any news

Sane started to train with us, good news, and he moves surprisingly really well, it was nice to see him back. I don’t know [when he will be back]. He needs a little bit more time I think. But we will see. Now it’s a bit like Ayme [Laporte], he started training before the first game against Sheffield [United], two or three weeks ago, so he needs time. We will see

[on Tosin Adarabioyo] I have updates [on his performances]. In the last part of the season, the end of the season, we are going to sit down again and talk. It’s possible for Tosin Adarabioyo to come back but it depends on the ideas we have. We have four central defenders, plus Eric [Garcia] and Taylor [Harwood-Bellis], but I know he is playing regularly and that is the most important thing for the players that we loan

2020 02 01 Retrieve

[Sterling’s ‘dry January’ has left him in need of a Man City goal] He defended brilliantly against Wan-Bissaka in the last game and had clear chances that no other player can create for themselves. Unfortunately he could not score a goal but he was there, so I am more than delighted with the performance against United because the people with statistics with goals and assists say it has been a month but I am not judging Raheem just for that. It is important but not the only thing

He is one of the only guys I’ve met in my career with recovery quicker than I’ve seen before. It’s incredible. He could play every two games and of course the more he plays regularly the better and better he feels. All the players feel that

2020 02 01b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says his tenure at Manchester City will be seens as a failure if he fails to win the Champions League] We will, of course, not just be judged on the way we play but the titles we win. That is the truth. It is as simple as that. Last year was an extraordinary one for us but people say, ‘But you didn’t win the Champions League’. That is why I will be judged, if we don’t win it in my final period here, that I will be a failure here. I know that. But I enjoy working with my players and my players still win a lot of games. Winning a certain way is what helps you to win the titles and we believe we can play that way. We will see at the end

They are quite different but there are similarities. Their teams are both quite aggressive. I saw Tottenham at Southampton and they were alive. They conceded a last-minute goal but I saw a team that is there. Every manager has different ideas, both are incredible managers. Mauricio Pochettino was there five or six years while Mourinho has been there just months, so all managers need time to make our teams play the way we want

2020 02 02 Retrieve

[Guardiola says players decide who takes penalties after Man City fluff again against Tottenham] They decide. If we scored, it would have been better, maybe, but in the second half we started well and created chances to score and didn’t do that. Until Zinchenko was sent off, the rest was OK

2020 02 02b Retrieve

[Guardiola concedes title to ‘unstoppable’ Liverpool after Manchester City lose to Tottenham] Yes, we are far away. [Liverpool] are unstoppable with a lot of points, we drop points in games that are quite similar today, even when we play at Anfield. Now we target other competitions and to qualify for the Champions League next season. Two seasons ago we had 100 points, 19 [clear of Manchester] United and Mourinho, and I don’t know how many from Liverpool. In that period Liverpool were strong, they’re stronger right now.

Today is not the day to reveal what you have to do. The reality against United [in the League Cup semi-final] is we conceded one shot on target, we created incredible amounts of chances and lost the game and today is quite similar. Against that it’s difficult to find a solution. What do we have to do? I don’t know

[Spurs by contrast managed only three efforts on goal as they won to climb to fourth in the table] We are there, we are in the box, in the penalty spot, alone with the keeper with two players and we are not able to score a goal. Maybe one day we make a click and it changes, the team is good, I like the way we play, but it’s not enough. The distance is so big [to Liverpool], next season we have to do better

2020 02 02c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes the Premier League must be concerned by Liverpool’s domination of the competition this season] The last two seasons it was an owner from the Premier League that says that can’t happen again, City winning the titles that way with 100 points is not good for the Premier League. Now it’s Liverpool. The owner has to be concerned again

To get better, not just to win the title, to be better for yourself, to compete for ourselves, to do what we have to do. It’s a big distance, but we have many competitions in every game, today we can learn things to be better in the future. I’m not used to it but it happens, sport is like that, teams all the time don’t win, win, win, sometimes you lose. To understand why helps you to get better

2020 02 02d Retrieve

[Guardiola refuses to criticise Man City players after Spurs defeat] We played well but lost the game. It happened again. They had two shots and scored two goals. I don’t have too many things to say about the performance. We have to accept it and analyse it. It is not easy. We did really well, honestly. With this performance, how should I be critical? This performance would be an incredible mistake to say how bad they are. We created chances and conceded few. A few times this season it has happened. The sending off was a key point. We said at half-time be careful, yellow cards are a fast and quick action

2020 02 03 Retrieve

[The 10-man Premier League champions were beaten by Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham in their latest outing following defeat in a Manchester derby] I’m not angry. When we didn’t play good or don’t run or don’t fight [I’m angry]. This is a team built to play in a certain way, we have to be so precise. But never when we lose am I away from my players, because I know them, but we lost the game, we talk about moving forward and keep going, there’s a lot of months to play and we try to do it

I don’t know, but this is the business, to win games and score more goals than the opponent, today we didn’t do that, but I don’t know another way to play good and create more chances than the opponent. I always believes for the statistics we create more than the opponent you normally win the games, that’s what we have to do, I know what you have to do, I’ve lived this position as a football player and a manager, it’s not the first time we’ve played good but not scored goals. We are going to work on that

2020 02 04 Retrieve

[Leroy Sane was offered a new contract amid the transfer talk last year] I don’t have any new news, I’m sorry. I would like to tell you but […] You have to ask Txiki [Begiristain]. The last info I had was that we made Leroy Sane an offer a long time ago and all the time he didn’t reject it, so after that, I don’t have any news

2020 02 05 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes Barcelona are in line for a lean period similar to that suffered by Real Madrid in the wake of Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure when Lionel Messi finally leaves Camp Nou] It is inevitable, these players are so important. When Messi leaves Barca they will need some time to re-adjust. It is inevitable. These guys score 40 or 50 goals a season

[there is one game more than most that stands out for the coach: a 6-2 thrashing of Madrid in the Bernabeu in May 2009 on their way to the La Liga crown] When people ask me about the title I’ve won that gets me most excited in my career as a manager, I say that it’s the first league I won with Barcelona. The first La Liga we won, we won it there. That 2-6 came on the back of 12 victories in a row for them. They lost the next four. We knew that if we lost that game with the team that they had, it would have been difficult. It was a great day

2020 02 05b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Man City not winning the Champions League is not the end of the world] City was a club that for a decade wanted to just stay in the Premier League but then suddenly, they were bought by people from Abu Dhabi and they took a leap forward and won four leagues in a decade. The only thing they don’t have is a Champions League and it’s normal that people ask for it. It’s good that they ask for it. I will try, and if not this year then the next year […] the world doesn’t end if you don’t win it

[Barcelona-Madrid clashes are one match he always looks forward to] Do I miss the Clasico? A little bit, yes. Every year it was the game of the century. Here it is very different. In terms of the media, it’s totally different

2020 02 05c Retrieve

[Pep: Something’s going on at Madrid if Eden Hazard isn’t playing well] If he’s not playing well, something’s going on at Madrid because he is really good. Not a top player, another level above. What we saw in England […] he is world class. But the whole world knows that you need a period of adaptation

[former Barcelona boss Guardiola admits he misses taking the club on in El Clasicos] A little bit, yes. Every year it was the game of the century. Here it is very different. In terms of the media, it’s totally different

2020 02 06 Retrieve

[Could Man City really sign Messi for free?] The best is Messi. Messi is [the best] number nine, number 10, number 11, number seven, number six, number five, number four […] He would be good in the Premier League but I think Barcelona is the right place to finish his career

2020 02 06b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola asks De Bruyne to play for Real Madrid? Florentino will have to call me!] Could De Bruyne play in Madrid? Florentino will have to call me

[Pep Guardiola plays down the prospect of Phil Foden leaving the club] Phil Foden is very good. He is going to explode. He doesn’t have a release clause, so you are going to have a hard time picking him up. You will have to negotiate with me

[Pep Guardiola on himself] I was in my best shape at 23 or 24 years old. I was a slow central midfielder, I couldn’t shoot, I couldn’t dribble, I was poor in the air, I wasn’t quick. I got by, Barcelona’s playing style helped me. Sometimes I watch myself in a game from back then and now I couldn’t play even as a joke. Now, everyone is so much better prepared, the way they are taken care of and with training technology, physios, doctors

2020 02 07 Retrieve

[Guardiola unsure if Man City star Sterling will be fit to face Real Madrid] Of course it takes weeks, but we will see before Leicester, Madrid and the rest of the games. I don’t know right now. It is a problem. [Injuries are] always a problem, but it is what it is.

[Leroy Sane still recovering from the cruciate knee ligament injury] He’s started to train with us, he is still not there. When you have an injury, especially this one for six months, you need to recover, tempo, rhythm, confidence in your knee, and don’t think about the injury. He needs time, it’s not a case of him training and he will then immediately be there, it’s not like an ankle or a muscular injury. This injury it needs time. He needs weeks. What’s important is the surgery was perfect and he’s recovering incredibly well, he’ll come back stronger than before but now he needs a little bit of time.

2020 02 07b Retrieve

[Will the Carabao Cup be scrapped?] Eliminate competitions. Take them out completely - so less games. Less games, less competitions, less teams, more quality, less quantity. The people are going enjoy it. The people are going to go to the theatre, to the cinema, restaurants, to watch the fireworks. That is what they would do. It’s just to protect the players […] For them they’d enjoy it more, the people too. People say they can’t live without football, they can live without football for a while. It’s too much, honestly

2020 02 07c Retrieve

[Guardiola dismisses Man City transfer claims] Messi’s a player for Barcelona, he will stay there, that is my wish. I’m not going to talk about players for another club. I think he’s going to finish his career there, it’s my wish.

[Guardiola said of Aguero] He’s one of the best in the Premier League. For every season to be there despite his injuries, he’s an exceptional player and overall an incredible person

[Guardiola’s side have slipped a long way off the title pace] I think we’re a very good team, I like the way we play this season. We cannot deny the gap is big, we didn’t expect to be 22 points behind, but it’s the reality, we have to accept it and learn from it, but I like Man City. I don’t have an explanation, I’d like to but I don’t know. We’ve scored a lot of goals this season. I think we are there, we have people in the box

2020 02 08 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Leroy Sane needs time to develop confidence in his right knee before returning to match action] He’s started training with us. When you have an injury, especially like this one for six months … you need to recover the tempo, the rhythm, the confidence in your body, in your knee, don’t think about the injury. It needs time. It’s not like an ankle, for example, or a muscular injury. The injury to the knee always needs time. He needs weeks, [what is] important is the surgery was perfect and he’s recovering incredibly well, and he will come back hopefully stronger than before, but right now he needs a little bit more time

It’s a hamstring injury, and we will see. Of course it takes weeks but we’ll see before Leicester, [Real] Madrid and the rest of the games. I don’t know right now. It’s a problem, but it’s a problem we had with [Ilkay] Gundogan out for six months in the first year, and [Aymeric] Laporte this season for four or five months. It’s always a problem but it is what it is. During the season it happens, this kind of thing. unfortunately for the players

2020 02 08b Retrieve

[How the Pep Guardiola factor could affect Man City’s summer overhaul] That’s the not only reason they come here, because I am here. I’d say we have been in contact with others who didn’t come when I was here! I think the club is big enough and good enough to be attractive for players who want to play in the way we do, or they watch TV and see us and we have played against them. They will still want to come because of economic reasons, or because just they want to play for City. I think Man City is not a bad solution for players

I am here because club was stable and moving forward before I came here. Mancini won the title, and also with Manuel and the football they were playing then was really good. I’m not the reason why - the club is good enough, and we need players to believe they can help us. We want to maintain these levels we’ve had over the past seasons not just for the manager who is in position. There has to be other issues. The club has to be good to convince players and agents

2020 02 09 Retrieve

[Guardiola hopes John Stones can make England squad despite Man City struggles] It’s my problem. I am a human being; I suffer when they suffer. I want John to be with the national team. My feeling for him is the same as always. I have to make decisions and be honest. It’s not easy when I select Eric Garcia [ahead of Stones], but he played really well and deserved a chance. It’s not about a particular reason [that he hasn’t played as often]. Not just John, but all the players can be selected for national teams. They have to play here as best as possible

In Champions League, if they are off their line, that would be disallowed. But here there is a new rule. Here keepers can go forward and not have a save disallowed. In one country it is one way, and another it is different. I am not in meetings but the people told the guys in Europe it is different to here. The rule is the same for everyone here. What’s confusing is why it is handball in one game and not another. We believe VAR is going to help because machines can make mistakes. But of course, people use the machines

2020 02 10 Retrieve

[Guardiola remarked sarcastically when asked about the idea of expanding the Champions League] I think the solution is you have to make a year of 400 days, that is a solution, 400 or 500, more or less. After that we can book another competition. Maybe UEFA or FIFA can talk about it. We have few days a year, that’s the problem

2020 02 12 Retrieve

[Guardiola insists he isn’t the world’s best manager] What is the best coach in the world? I never felt I am the best, never in my life. When I won six titles in a row in Barcelona and won trebles, I never felt that. I won because I had extraordinary players at big clubs. There are incredible managers, they don’t have these players, they don’t have these big clubs. I’m a good manager but not the best. Give me a team that is not like Manchester City, I am not going to win

Liverpool spent four or five years to win their first trophy last season. It was a process. New players, investment, more and more, and after they got them they are the best team in the world right now. Sometimes people believe if you are Pep, Jurgen, or you are another [big] name, you have to win all titles every season with 2000 million points and 2000 million goals. Sometimes it’s not possible, sometimes because of the opposition, sometimes you cannot do it. Not all the time in any sport has a team won everything every season all of the time.

We played really well this season. In the games we lost we played really really well, and the hunger is not the reason why [we lost]. We work harder than last season when we won all the domestic trophies in this country. I want to win the Champions League. I dream and will enjoy preparing games games against madrid, to see what we can do. This process, these two weeks, are the happiest moments of my profession - looking at what we can do to beat them

2020 02 13 Retrieve

[Guardiola: Man City could sack me if I lose against Real Madrid] That’s why it is so difficult to win it. And in 100 and more seasons of history for Manchester City, it was 100 seasons of failure - that is not true. There are many incredible players that made our fans happy, and (times when) our fans enjoyed part of the season. I know the people say ‘You are good’ or ‘You’re not good enough.’

I accept it. I want to win the Champions League, I dream and will enjoy the games against Real Madrid, to see what I can do. And this process, the two weeks before, will be the happiest moments of my profession, to imagine what we can do to beat them. If we don’t beat them, then the chairman will come, or the sporting director, and say ‘It’s not good enough, we want the Champions League, I’m going to sack you’. Then ‘OK, thank you, it was a pleasure

I don’t know, many times it has happened. Or maybe he will say ‘OK you’ve done well, but what can we improve?’. Since I arrived, that is what I have got from this club - what can we do, then do it better and do it better. That is the process. Liverpool have spent four or five years to win the first title last season. It was a process - new players, the process, then invest more and more, and they are the best team in the world right now.

Always people believe that you are Pep, or you are Jurgen, or another name, so you have to win all the titles, get two thousand million points, two thousand million goals. Sometimes it’s not possible. Sometimes there are opponents, sometimes you cannot do it because in no sport does one team win all the titles all the time. It’s impossible. We give a bad, bad message for the new generation, to our kids, to just count the winner, the trophies. You said the season would be a disaster, but if we win the Champions League it would be sensational. Why?

2020 02 15 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola with a humble response when it was him that he was the best coach in the world] What is the best coach in the world? I never felt I am the best, never in my life. When I won six titles in a row in Barcelona and won trebles, I never felt that. I won because I had extraordinary players at big clubs. There are incredible managers, they don’t have these players, they don’t have these big clubs. I’m a good manager but not the best. Give me a team that is not like Manchester City, I am not going to win

2020 02 19 Retrieve

[Guardiola bites back after Bartomeu’s FFP comments] I don’t know if they spy on me but they know me, it’s not necessary to spy on me. If they’re happy that we are suspended I would say to the president of Barca to give us two appeals. I ask right now that the people trust what they (City) have done. Don’t talk too loud, Barcelona, that’s my advice, because everybody is involved in situations. We’re going to appeal and hopefully in the future we can play in the Champions League against Barcelona

2020 02 19b Retrieve

[Pep reiterates commitment to Man City despite UEFA ban] It is not finished. The club believes it is unfair so we are going to appeal and we are going to wait. So all we can do on the pitch is all we have done in the last four years and try to win games. We are going to wait. I trust my club 100 per cent and what they have done. They have explained to me the reasons why and we are going to see

We spoke. We are going to fight, like we fought every single day, until the end of the season. We are optimistic. Next season, if we qualify for the Champions League we will be there. If they don’t sack me, and that can happen, I will stay here. First because I want to stay, it is something special, beyond the contract I have. I want to stay to continue to help the club and maintain this level as long as possible

Why should I leave? I said a month ago, I love this club, I like to be here. Why should I leave? We spoke with the players - in the next three months we will focus on what we have to do and after we will see the sentence. Personally, I will be here

2020 02 20 Retrieve

[Guardiola’s emphatic response calms fears after Man City Champions League ban] If they don’t sack me, which could happen, I will stay here more than ever. First because I want to stay, not because this is something special. I want to stay longer than the contract that I have. I said before and now and until the end of my contract that I want to help the club grow and maintain this level for as long as possible. Why should I leave? I said before that I love this club and I like to be here so why should I leave, more than ever in this situation. I am optimistic we can finish this well

I wish I could say more, I wish I could have been speaking five minutes after this was announced but I did have to take legal advice of what can and cannot be shared

I’m confident that we’ll play in Europe next season. I’m pretty sure we’ll defend our position. I know a little about the reasons why and I support the club 100 per cent. I trust what they told me

[quizzed about the response of Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu’s support for the sanctions] Don’t talk too loud, Barcelona, that’s my advice, because everybody is involved in situations. We’re going to appeal and hopefully in the future we can play in the Champions League against Barcelona

2020 02 21 Retrieve

[Guardiola suggests he could stay at Man City beyond current contract] I don’t know. I want to stay one more year and after that it depends. It also depends on the results. When I said a month ago, that in the future we’ll have been together for five seasons, I don’t exclude it at all if the club is happy with me and our group to extend the contract. Now I want to be focused on these three months, we have to do game-by-game the best as possible, winning games and after we have time to think

[When asked what he was looking for in the future] My happiness. I’m looking for my happiness. That’s the only thing I’m looking for.

[When asked what it was about Manchester that made him happy] For the weather! I have to take care of my skin; people say the sun is not good. Everyone is looking for that to be happy. I’m working with exceptional players and I have the feeling that they follow us 100 per cent. I know it’s not easy working with us and with me, but I’m happy. That is the only reason why - when I move on always it’s because I am thinking I can be happier than the place that I was before. That is the only reason. But I feel I am with a club where we have got incredible owners and a good relationship so I think it will not be a problem to understand both sides if we decide to stay three more years or stay in the time we are together. With Khaldoon Al Mubarak [City’s chairman] we are going to talk at the end of the season or in the middle of next season and we will see

2020 02 21b Retrieve

[Guardiola trusts Sterling commitment but knows Man City face fight] All the clubs have to know that when Real Madrid or Barca knock on the door the other clubs must tremble, they will be a little bit in trouble. Barcelona and Real Madrid are maybe the strongest and most powerful teams in terms of history and how good they are. That is normal and I understand completely. But on the same point, you just see the commitment from Raheem, every single day when we arrives. He’s never injured but he’s coming back soon.

His commitment in every game, offensively and defensively … he’s one of the best players in the world and its normal that big clubs see his desire for the team. I don’t know if Madrid or Barcelona have called his agent - I don’t have any doubts about his commitment from the first day to the last day that Raheem and other ones have had and will have until the end

Twelve days between the last game against Spurs and West Ham, I wanted to see the rhythm for the team. We are not used to such a long time without games. I saw many good things against West Ham in terms of rhythm and the way we play. If we play well [against Leicester] we are more confident to go to Madrid to play but I’m not going to play this game thinking of Madrid. Winning games helps to win the next one, that is normal. It is better to go Madrid with a good performance; this performance would help us to win the game. But in the end, it will be a different competition. 180 minutes, it will be a different approach to what we have to do.

2020 02 21c Retrieve

[Exceptional Vardy earns Guardiola praise ahead of Man City’s Leicester test] Because we play 40 metres in front, it’s perfect for him. Jamie Vardy scored goals against us and against all the teams, because in the box, in the final third, he’s exceptional. He’s one of the better strikers I’ve ever seen in movement, in finishing, in high pressing. In many things he’s an exceptional player

I said when we played before, in our home game, how impressed [I was]. I know the incredible job he did at Liverpool, but I was not here. I saw him when he was at Celtic in Glasgow and I thought, ‘Wow, this team plays good and aggressive and had good vibes’. They have incredible organisation at Leicester, with good scouting. They know exactly what they have to do, and it’s nice to see teams play as well as they play for the benefit of English football, to have this kind of manager and a team playing this way

2020 02 21d Retrieve

[No Sterling exit fears for Man City boss Guardiola despite Real Madrid transfer hint] The players are free to talk about what they believe. I am completely sure about the commitment of our players. They have shown it for many, many years. No one knows what will happen, but right now the commitment for the last three months, every single game, I don’t have any doubts

All of them are ok, not 100 per cent some of them. [David] Silva was smart to come off for the last minutes [against West Ham], Sterling is in the latter stage [of recovery]. He’s getting better. Sane is good as well, but of course he needs a little more time after six months out

We cannot change what people think. I know how hard we work. I am so proud about how hard we’ve worked all these years. No one helped us outside, we did it day by day, game by game. This is not finished, it’s not over, we appeal as a club and we see what happens

2020 02 22 Retrieve

[Man City wins against Leicester 1-0] They are incredibly quick with Jamie Vardy, Harvey Barnes and Kelechi. It was an incredible test for us. I’m so pleased for the victory

2020 02 22b Retrieve

[Guardiola defiant as Man City’s penalty woes continue] We have missed four penalties in a row, but maybe we will shoot a penalty when we need it to win something. The keepers are good too, but the next one we are going to score

[A heavyweight encounter with Real Madrid is set to be taken in on Wednesday] The preparation after 12 days off was good, we have played two good games, and it’s good to prepare for Madrid with these good opponents. We are playing the kings of the competition, we will see, we will try to enjoy it and do our game

2020 02 22c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is expecting Manchester City to face a tough transfer window due to inflated fees] I don’t think so. I don’t think so because today it is so difficult to change the players because they are so expensive and it is not easy. The club must [also] be sustainable, I understand completely, and in the situation that we are in, we have to wait, [not] anticipate. Our idea right now with the situation with Financial Fair Play [is] when we are going to appeal. Right now, we have to wait. So, we are going to play these three months, and when the season finishes, we will see what the situation is. And with the club, together, we are going to decide what is best - not just for the next year, but for the next two, three, four years for the cub

I think the club is working as though nothing has changed, nothing has happened, and the players have to play like they have done all of these seasons [previously] in the same way. We believe we are going to be there. What we have to do is to do our job and play like we have done these seasons and then, after that, [we will see].

2020 02 22d Retrieve

[Guardiola says if Real Madrid or Barcelona were to follow up with serious interest, it would cause any other team to tremble] All the clubs have to know that when Real Madrid or Barcelona knock on the door, the other clubs must tremble, they will be a little bit in trouble. Barcelona and Real Madrid are maybe the strongest and most powerful teams in terms of history and how good they are. That is normal and I understand completely. But on the same point, you just see the commitment from Raheem, every single day when he arrives, his commitment in every game, offensively and defensively.

So he’s one of the best players in the world and it’s normal that big clubs see his desire for the team. I don’t know if Madrid or Barcelona called his agent. I don’t have any doubts about his commitment from the first day to the last day that Raheem and other ones have had and will have until the end

2020 02 23 Retrieve

[Guardiola: Real Madrid are the club Manchester City want to emulate] I have an incredible admiration for this club. The players who have played there have played so many times in the [Champions League] final and I don’t know how many times each one has lifted it. Maybe Claudio [Bravo] has won the Champions League and someone else. We don’t have many players who have won it. But we need the desire to win it and be ourselves, We could win it or lose it. But we must be ourselves in the 180 minutes against Real Madrid. It is the real, real test

You have players who come to Madrid and pull on the shirt, they know they are defending their history. That makes an extra thing. Not just the spectators and media. They are the club we want to emulate and imitate and we have to be there. I want to go there and at the end of the game I want to say ‘we were what we are’. This is the most important thing in these types of competitions. We need to go and try and do it at one of the biggest, nicest and most prestigious stadiums. After that, we will try with our weapons and try to score the goals. If we cannot, we will congratulate them and try and improve for the next time. For us being here is exciting, so good and we will try to do our best, knowing we play against a team who have won 13 Champions Leagues and is a king

2020 02 23b Retrieve

[Laporte was replaced by Nicolas Otamendi after 57 minutes of Saturday’s match, his third appearance since his return from a long lay-off with a knee injury] He asked me to be subbed. He’s not injured. We cannot forget he has been out for four or five months injured. They run a lot, (Jamie) Vardy, Kelechi (Iheanacho), (Harvey) Barnes, they are all so fast. It was quite different against West Ham (on Wednesday) where they was only one striker so it was easier to control, but he’s OK

2020 02 23c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says that the players will decide who will take penalties] It’s not normal for the quality we have, but like I said to them the next one we’re going to score and the taker [must] be convinced, practice and be convinced and do it. Next time we’re going to score and maybe it will be when we need it the most

[De Bruyne] is one option, but in the end they decide. I like it when players gave the initiative to do it. We didn’t score against Spurs in the Champions League last season, this season against Spurs we miss a penalty; in these kind of games it’s a big difference. I like the mentality, I like Sergio Aguero taking the ball and wanting to take it. Practice, be positive, one idea, shoot and score a goal

2020 02 23d Retrieve

[Laporte gives Man City new hope of Champions League success] Aymeric Laporte asked me to be substituted, but he’s not injured. He’s been four months, five months injured, we can’t forget that. He had to run a lot. It was different against West Ham, we could control it easier. He’s okay

[Man City have now missed five of their last seven chances from the spot] It’s not normal for the quality we have, but like I said to them the next one we’re going to score and the taker must be convinced, practice and be convinced and do it. We didn’t score against Spurs in the Champions League last season, this season against Spurs we missed a penalty - in this kind of games it’s a big difference. I like the mentality, I like Sergio taking the ball and wanting to take it. Practice, be positive, one idea, shoot and score a goal

2020 02 24 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola expects prominent members of his first-team squad to honour their contracts] I’m completely sure [of] the commitment of our players. It’s about what they’ve shown for many years - nothing changes. At the end of the season nobody knows what is going to happen. With calm we decide what we want, but for the next three months the commitment will be incredible

2020 02 25 Retrieve

[Guardiola confirms Sterling fit for Real Madrid clash] Yeah, Raheem is fit. His natural physical condition, his regeneration is amazing. He said to us, ‘I could have played the West Ham game, I could have played against Leicester’. The doctor said to be careful because of the timing. With this injury it’s always three weeks, one month and after 15 days he wanted to play. That’s a good sign. He’s fit, he’s ready

[Guardiola said of Hazard] It’s very bad Eden Hazard’s not here. I had the honour of watching and suffering him in England! To see him close you think, ‘What a player’. I wish he was here. He is a magnificent player

[City currently facing a two-year ban from the Champions League] We were under suspicion for a long time. We have the right to appeal. I trust the people in my club. They showed me the arguments and the proof. We are going to appeal and we are optimistic. We deserve to be in the Champions League. If it doesn’t happen, we have to accept it with the people who want to stay. I trust the club. We appeal as a club and wait to see what will happen

2020 02 26 Retrieve

[Guardiola said ahead of the game against Madrid] Many things have happened in recent years but it’s football. I remember incredible episodes but we cannot control it. I don’t like to win with the wrong decisions, but the referee, VAR, things have happened… but we just have to do what we have to do

These players will have a lot of chances [to win the Champions League]. I know we are playing the kings (Real Madrid) but unless you die, there will be more chances. There will be other opportunities. So, the ban adds no special motivation. The desire should always be there anyway. It’s another game - that’s all

[Even Thomas Muller recently claimed that sometimes Guardiola used to change his tactics too much against stronger sides] If the players felt that, if Thomas felt that, it’s good information. Maybe it’s my mistake but I try to make them confident and get them to go out to try to play their own game

2020 02 26b Retrieve

[Guardiola takes swipe at critics after Real Madrid masterclass] It doesn’t count because we won, it doesn’t work that way. The important thing is the way we played. We tried to come here to win the game and we did. This is just the first part. If one team can overcome this situation, it’s this club. When we were better, we conceded a goal. When they were better, we scored a goal. That’s football. I remember the quarter-final a few seasons ago at Anfield when we played incredibly well and they scored all their shots on target

After five months injured in this scenario it’s so demanding. Fernandinho came in and did incredibly well. I’m so proud. This is the first step. It’s not over. We can enjoy the moment. On Sunday we have a final. We’ll keep going in the Premier League and prepare for the second game against Real Madrid.

2020 02 27 Retrieve

[A Gabriel Jesus header and cool penalty from Kevin De Bruyne sealed a thrilling 2-1 comeback win for Manchester City at Real Madrid, who had captain Sergio Ramos sent off in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie] We created opportunities all night. Courtois played really well. But for my experience in this competition, you don’t control 90 minutes in the Champions League. We produced a good save from Benzema when it was vital, and we created really good goal chances which most teams don’t do in this stadium. To win in the Bernabeu is a great satisfaction. We aren’t used to such results and this tells us we can go to any stadium and win

2020 02 27b Retrieve

[Guardiola would not be drawn on the extent of the injury, following the game, only saying Aymeric Laporte was injured] He’s had four or five months and it’s a problem when you come back, and he came back in this demanding game, it’s a pity. We dreamed to be with him until the end. Unfortunately, we’ve suffered a lot in this department. But, with John Stones, with Nico Otamendi and Fernandinho we’ll go through

2020 02 28 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola on Man City tactics] There is not a striker in the world to make the intensity without the ball like Gabriel. He’s a guy who can have incredible runs in behind. He’s not an especially good player when he receives the frontal balls, but when he starts from the sides to make the diagonals, he’s so fast and so good.

We decided to play without proper striker for the way they defend. They are so aggressive, man to man on goal kicks and so high. So you have to make the pitch wide. I wanted us to put the ball to the wingers as quickly as possible. After 10-15 minutes, we had more fluidity with that

2020 02 28b Retrieve

[Man City coach Guardiola liberally dispensed information on how his plotted Madrid’s downfall] We decided to play without a proper striker because of the way Madrid defend. They defend a special way. They are so aggressive, man-to-man at the goal-kicks, so high and when this happens you have to make the pitch wide

2020 02 28c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has lauded Sergio Aguero for his incredible reaction to learning he was not in the starting line-up against Real Madrid on Wednesday] In these three guys, the behaviour in the locker room was an incredible exception, specifically these three players. It was exceptional. I’m so proud about the reaction they had, knowing they wanted to play, of course, I understand that. Sergio was incredible, honestly, I never could express my gratitude and my thanks to him, to understand me a little bit and to help the team, being a legend as he is for what he has done for this club. I need him; we need him. I know he is ready to help us, and David as well, and even John Stones, and Oleks Zinchenko, and Eric Garcia as well, on the bench. My complete gratitude. I would love all the players to be like them

Of course, it’s better, it’s much better to go to play a final after a good result in Madrid but we cannot live a final thinking how good we were. [The tie] is not done, first of all. Always I thought that it’s incredibly difficult to win at big, big clubs, but it’s an incredible challenge, more difficult to beat them twice. Normally, it doesn’t happen. The big clubs can lose one game, but two? Rarely, it’s not often. But it helps. In football, teams are a state of emotion. It’s better to go to play a final not just with results but with the character, the way we played

There are a few things I don’t like about your country, for example the academy teams cannot play in strongest leagues, but at the same time it’s an incredible, good decision here in England that players for the first team, to recover, can play in the second one for their recovery. I don’t want to put a target line [on Sane’s first-team comeback]. We will see the game and speak with him

2020 02 28d Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola confirms Leroy Sane set to play his first competitive football since August] Leroy Sane is with the EDS tonight. It is always nice to ease back and get a feel for the game. It is incredible that first-team players can join in with academy games for recovery. It is good

[Sane, meanwhile, has an option to stay a year beyond the end of his present contract, which ends in June 2021] I don’t have any new news, I’m sorry. I would like to tell you but…you have to ask Txiki Begiristain. The last info I had was that we made him an offer a long time ago and all the time he didn’t reject it, so after that I don’t have any news

2020 02 28e Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Aymeric Laporte to miss another month for Man City with hamstring injury] It’s a hamstring injury. Normally it is three weeks or a month. We try to avoid it but it has happened. Sometimes, it happens. I imagine it’s tough and you have to work hard. Life is not easy and always in the world the people who survive are the ones who cope with the bad moments. It is what it is. Accept it, work hard to come back as soon as possible

It is so difficult to reach a final so being there again it is a great achievement. Hopefully for the fans we can win it. The result the of last day is past and now we focus on the final. It is a different competition with a historic team. I think it will be a fantastic game

Of course it is better. It’s much better to go to play a final after a good result in Madrid but we cannot live a final thinking how good we were. Madrid is not done first of all, always I have thought that it is incredibly difficult to win at big clubs but it is more challenging to beat them twice. Big clubs can lose one game but two? It does not come often. But it helps us so football is about emotion and it is better to play a final with the character

2020 02 29 Retrieve

[Guardiola: Man City deserve Carabao Cup success for trying to win every game] The Carabao Cup is not the same as the Premier League and I would prefer to be winning the Premier League, but at the same time it is a good competition. I remember the first game when we were at Preston and we used Eric [García] and Taylor [Harwood-Bellis] and they played to win the game. That is what I like of my teams, it happens all the time. There is not one opponent that can say they faced one of my teams, Manchester City, Bayern Munich or Barcelona, and we didn’t try to win. It takes courage and bravery to try to win all the time. Sometimes we have to defend more or use more long balls but that is only because we are up against a good opponent, not because we want to

The margins between victory and defeat in that game were so tiny. It was the same with Tottenham last season and the season before that with Liverpool. In Madrid, Sergio Ramos had a chance to make it 2-0 and if he scores Zidane is a genius and I am a disaster. Forget about tactics, the manager who wins is a genius and the one who loses is a disaster. I make decisions, that’s my job, but not all of them work and every manager is the same. I prefer to give credit to the players, even the ones who didn’t play in Madrid. Their attitude and professionalism was incredible

2020 03 01 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola saluted his Carabao Cup-winning Manchester City side] Three times in a row is a big success. It’s the consistency, incredible. It was awesome. We struggled in the first minutes and the last ones. They had two clear chances in the first minutes but we played really well, especially in the second half

The game was good. Phil was clinical. Big success, our second title of the season with the Community Shield, it’s so nice. We’ve won a lot. I tried when we arrive, every game we play we try to win it, every competition we try to win it, and three times in a row, being here and winning is great

2020 03 01b Retrieve

[Including the Community Shield, City have now won eight of the last nine competitions they have entered and head coach Pep Guardiola does not expect any team to match that level of dominance] I think the fact that we’ve won eight of nine is incredible - it’s remarkable. I think it will be so difficult to do it again, not just for ourselves but for our opponents - it’s the consistency. For this club it’s not just about one title, it’s about every game we play and every title we play for counts and try to win and that is the best thing we can give for this club. Sometimes you win a title and then after cannot win a title for a long time. What is important is everybody knows we have the responsibility to fight and try to win the games and titles and that means a lot

2020 03 01c Retrieve

[Four days later, Man City faced a less illustrious opponent in relegation-threatened Aston Villa but the score was the same] Three times in a row is a big success. It’s the consistency, incredible. It was awesome, a big success. Our second title of the season with the Community Shield, it’s so nice. We’ve won a lot. I tried when I arrived to ensure that every game we play, we try to win it; every competition, we try to win it, so being here three trimes in a row and winning it again is great

2020 03 01d Retrieve

[Man City have a remarkable record in the competition] The mentality is the same, to be starving and hungry to win another one. There are no words to express my gratitude to these players. It is honestly so difficult to do it and to maintain that hunger. It is a great achievement to get to another final, but now we must try to win. What we have won so far has been incredible

[Guardiola also knows, however, that you need to luck to win the Champions League] The line to win or lose is so tight. Little details make the difference. There are 1,000 examples I could give about these knockout stages in the last few years. I know exactly what happened in the game, the players know it and we know it is not over and how difficult it will be

2020 03 01e Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has hailed Kevin De Bruyne as an exceptional player] It’s not necessary for me to say absolutely anything about Kevin any more. I’d just say: ‘Take a look at how he plays’. The performance level, the continuity, the influence in our final third and on our finishing, the desire, his calmness and positivity. I mean, I asked him: ‘Kevin, what did you feel before you took that penalty?’ and he just said: ‘I’m going to score’. He doesn’t feel much pressure, he likes to play in the big events, he’s an exceptional player. I say to him: ‘Kevin, don’t forget, do the simple things properly’. Sometimes he’s alone and might lose the ball. He’s able to see something special and you have the spaces no one else can see but even with that he’s improving and improving. He’s not 33 or 34. He’s still a lot of years to play and always you have the feeling when he’s on the pitch that he’s never disconnected, even if he’s not influencing the game at that moment. It’s important to be like that.

Honestly, with these types of players , the challenge comes from inside themselves. If you have to push them to be something special they are not big, big, big. I don’t like players who complain. If a guy wants to be better than he already is then it is up to him.

I don’t believe too much in trying to seduce them to become better players. They all know what it takes to improve - so it has to come from them. The big things in sport always come from inside the players. Not the trainers. The one detail that all the best players have is to never complain. They don’t complain to the manager, the club, because they know it is up to them to become better day by day.

The others, they are the ones who make reasons why they can’t do it. That’s why they change clubs all the time and never end up with a top club. The big players always look at themselves. Unfortunately, when Kevin helped us get 100 points he still wasn’t good enough to be the best player in the league. Maybe in the future

2020 03 02 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola paid tribute to Claudio Bravo’s professionalism after Man City won the League Cup for the third successive year] He was involved in a lot of titles that we won, he’s one of the most incredible professional players I’ve ever seen. the first year with Willy he was incredibly correct and hopefully the other players can learn from him, what he won with the national team and other clubs and accept his position. He’s an extraordinary person, he will have success because he’s such an intelligent person. The ‘keepers in a final, they have to save it when it’s a tight game and he did it - like Ederson did against Benzema, he did it again. He played against Liverpool in the Community Shield and Carabao Cup. Many titles he was involved in, I never had doubts his quality as a keeper

2020 03 03 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has revealed that Sergio Aguero is ready to face Sheffield Wednesday] He’s [Aguero] okay for tomorrow. [Claudio] Bravo is okay too, he is going to play tomorrow

[Sane has figured for City’s U23 side in an effort to get minutes under his belt] Six months out - it’s a process. You feel good but confidence … he’s doing the normal steps to come back

When they win a trophy, they go to take a shower and then they think about the next one. It’s so nice what we have done in the last three years [in the League Cup] but tomorrow we have another final. Away in the FA Cup is always difficult for how important this competition is but we can go through to the quarter-finals and that is what we have to do. We have to be focused on that

The league is deserved and it is done. In other competitions we have won two this season and now we have the cup and the Premier League because we have to improve to finish second and get the most points as possible and then there are two competitions

2020 03 03b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Phil Foden has the sort of attitude that means he can achieve whatever he wants to in football] I want the best for him. He will get what he deserves and of course I’m delighted about his performance and behaviour in good and bad moments. He just works, and it always pays off. At 19 you have a lot to improve but with this behaviour he can do whatever he wants

No. He’s not ready. When you’re out, you start, you feel good but he’s not especially confident. He’s doing the normal steps he needs to come back. [With the] second team [he played] 50-60 minutes, now it’s weeks and weeks and weeks [of gaining full fitness].

The league is deserved, and it is done. In other competitions, we have won two this season and now we have the cup and the Premier League because we have to improve to finish second and get the most points as possible and then there are two competitions: the FA Cup and Champions League

[Guardiola also said he was impressed by the focus his team have shown in training] They trained so well today [Tuesday], they were focused. The team is so ready to play tomorrow

2020 03 04 Retrieve

[Back injury could see De Bruyne miss Manchester derby] He [Kevin de Bruyne] fell down in a bad position and had a problem with his back. We don’t know how long [he’ll be out for with Manchester derby on Sunday], hopefully not that much

The important thing is that we are there. We want to be in the draw. We are in the draw. This is our fourth game away in a row and we have another one at Old Trafford. We spend a lot of mental energy in the last games. The players were ready. We didn’t concede one shot on target that means a lot. The second half was better than the first because we found better the spaces where we should move. We are still alive

Of course we can be concerned but we can correct a few things. Continue with this pace, don’t concede free-kicks and corners. We didn’t concede once and that means a lot for our capacity to read the game. We scored a goal and we could have scored much more

2020 03 04b Retrieve

[Man City beat Aston Villa 2-1 in the Carabao Cup final and have one foot in the Champions League quarter-finals after beating Real Madrid 2-1 away] The important thing is that we are there. We want to be in the draw. We are in the draw. It is the FA Cup. The league we cannot win. We have two titles, FA Cup and Champions League. We prepare for it and and the end we have success

2020 03 05 Retrieve

[Guardiola said when asked about a return to Newcastle] What is important is that we are there. We want to be in the draw, we are in the draw. After a week this is our fourth game away in a row and we have another one on Sunday in Old Trafford. We spent a lot of mental energy the last games and then came here. The players were absolutely ready, we didn’t concede one shot on target and that means a lot because they can always create something

We cannot win the league, we have the FA Cup and Champions League so we knew it. It’s a final, we prepared for that, we talk about this game and at the end we had success. It’s better to go [to Old Trafford] winning games, being in the FA Cup than being out and tomorrow we’re going to watch a little bit of United versus Derby, analyse what they have done the last game and we’re going to go there to try to win

2020 03 05b Retrieve

[How Guardiola took control as Man City’s season threatened to fall apart] We have won [four] games, you never know. I think it was good in terms of November, December, January here is really tough and it was okay. For some players it was good, some lost their rhythm and were struggling a bit. I know how hard we work and I’m so proud of what we’ve done these years together. I have a different opinion. Nobody has helped us outside - we did an incredible job day-by-day, game-by-game and nothing will change the opinion

2020 03 06 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola is refusing to rule Kevin De Bruyne out of Sunday’s trip to Old Trafford] He is getting better, training and tomorrow he will improve. He feels better. We will see [about Sunday’s game]

It was a good month for us after the little break that we had. We had West Ham at home, Leicester away, Real and then the final of the Carabao Cup. We know how difficult these games are. I think we did well. There are a lot of games still to play

I love it. Derbies are special. The situation this season is a little bit different because we are playing to improve and finish second, not to win the title. For them it is so important to qualify for the Champions League. It is important to improve what we want to do. I’ve always believed United are a strong team. The game at home that we lost they played a good 30-34 minutes. Always, I have a big respect for United. Winning games and titles is good for our mood and confidence

2020 03 07 Retrieve

[Guardiola says Man Utd star Bruno Fernandes was never a transfer target for Man City] I said many times it looks like we are linked with a thousand million players every month. I don’t know if the agents want to create something to do that. But I think the club was not in talks with his agent about this player, but they link this guy and a thousand million more

I don’t know what it means ‘my type of player’. I like defenders too and good headers. I don’t believe too much that these players are perfect for this team and manager. But I think he is an exceptional player and that is why Man United bought him.

2020 03 07b Retrieve

[Why Manchester City never considered a move for Bruno Fernandes] I said many times it looks like we are linked with a thousand million players every month. So I don’t know if the agents want to create something to do that. But I think the club was not in talks with his agent about this player, but they link this guy and a thousand million more

[Guardiola said of Foden] He is with us because he is ready to play in all stages. Home, away, friendly games, Champions League games, he is ready

When it comes to expensive players we are ranking 23 and 24 but the club has a bad reputation on that. They say, ‘That’s just Man City spending money’ but, of course it is not true. You just have to see the numbers. Maybe one day [a record transfer] will happen, maybe not. The important thing is to buy good players who fit in to the way you want to play. The important thing is to take all the information about the player to reduce the uncertainty of a player being at a new club

2020 03 07c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola when asked if he plans on getting a tattoo of Wembley after winning the League Cup with Manchester City] My body doesn’t accept it (laughs).

2020 03 07b Retrieve

[Guardiola ‘never expected’ gap between Man City and United] I never expected to have this gap between us and United in these three or four years. I’ve no doubt about the quality of United and I appreciate the manager [Ole Gunnar Solskjaer]. He represents them in an exceptional way. United are working to improve and get closer to the people above them but Manchester City wants to improve also and the distance is what it is

They say ‘That’s just Manchester City spending money’ but of course it’s not true. Just look at the numbers. When it comes to expensive players we are ranking 23 and 24 but the club has a bad image on that. The important thing is to buy good players who fit in to the way you want to play, and their character. You take all the information you can about the player to reduce the uncertainty of him going to a new club. Maybe one day it will happen [spending £80 million on one player], maybe not

2020 03 08 Retrieve

[Guardiola would prefer if Man Utd had Rashford fit for derby] I’ve always said from my first day as manager that I like to have a full squad for opponents. would love to play against Eden Hazard for Madrid, Harry Kane for Tottenham and so on. I prefer to play when the top players, all the players are available. I hope Rashford can recover as quickly as possible. I look at who is available and after that I control no more

United have [Antony] Martial, [Daniel] James, Bruno Fernandes and the way they play is three or four different times and systems. We have to understand the quality they have

2020 03 08b Retrieve

[Guardiola defends players despite Manchester derby defeat] We played good, we missed a little in the final third but the second half was better and it was a good performance. We play the same way, tried the press and defend well and we did well. Our game is there, we played really good in terms of coming here. They wait and did long balls on the counterattack for Daniel James and Anthony Martial. We did our game but unfortunately we conceded a goal. They waited for our mistakes

We played good. We conceded a goal and should have avoided it, but in the second half we played good as well. So congratulations to Manchester United. The quality of the opponent always count. We played good. Yes, we could have played better if we win 5-0

2020 03 08c Retrieve

[Guardiola backs ‘exceptional’ Ederson to bounce back after errors in Manchester derby] He saved one or two, he’s an exceptional goalkeeper. I don’t come to judge my players, mistakes are part of the game. He will recover and is an exceptional goalkeeper

2020 03 10 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says I felt the power of Anfield, it was magnificent!] A bugger of a ground. The motto ‘This is Anfield’ is no marketing spin. There’s something about it that you will find in no other stadium in the world. They score a goal and over the next five minutes you feel that you’ll receive another four. You feel small and the rival players seem to be all over you.

2020 03 10b Retrieve

[Manchester City head coach Pep Guardiola has confirmed that Leroy Sane is in line for his first appearance of the 2019-20 campaign against Arsenal] He’s training. He’s not injured. We are going to decide but he was ready weeks ago. He’s getting better every week. I have many thoughts [on whether he will play]. All good thoughts

Let me think. Laporte, Kevin have both been training last two days. I don’t know if they will be able to play tomorrow. we’ll have another session tomorrow and the rest will be okay.

[When asked if he still keeps in contact with Arteta] Very often. He doesn’t need my help. We talk about everything, family, friends, colleagues, how he’s settling the team. I was convinced he would be a manager when the opportunity comes and this was the opportunity for him. His ideas are already in the team, his positional play is getting better. I’m convinced Arsenal will get better

2020 03 10c Retrieve

[Guardiola weigh in on coronavirus measures] We are conscious of it because it has happened already in Italy. The league is suspended, in Spain, the next two weeks are behind closed doors. It is going to happen here. The tendency rises at the same level as Italy before and in Spain right now. The other issue you have to ask is it is worse to play football without the spectators? We do our job for the people and if the people cannot come to watch us, there is no sense. I would not love to play matches in the Premier League or Champions League or the cups without the people. But we are going to follow the instructions of the governments. Everybody around the world is involved in that and we just follow what we have to do and follow the instructions

2020 03 11 Retrieve

[Guardiola backs misfiring Man City star Sterling to bounce back] He’s incredibly positive, especially in the fact that when he misses one chance he tries again. He was injured for two or three weeks and sometimes you need a little bit more time, but he’s coming back. I never was so much worried about these kind of actions, like Ederson last time. It happens. These are the guys who suffer the most. When it happens they have been supported and we try to let them feel we are here for them. Sometimes you speak with them and sometimes you leave them free. They are so mature to understand what they have to do

I think Gabriel can adapt perfectly in that way, especially as he doesn’t play wide, wide wide. He can play a little bit more inside like how Arsenal play with Aubameyang. Gabriel can play perfectly in that position and in the games he played he played really well.

[Leroy Sane, a specialist on the left wing, could make his long-awaited return from knee ligament surgery] Sometimes we need more specific winger in that position, it depends on the quality of our full-backs as well. To attack a defence with five players in the back and so deep, you have to make the pitch wide. If you don’t it is more difficult

2020 03 30 Retrieve

[Guardiola sends message to Manchester City fans amid coronavirus crisis] We miss football. We miss the life we had a few days ago, but now is the time to listen, to follow our scientists, doctors and nurses. You are my football family, and we are going to do everything possible to make you feel better. We’ll come back from this stronger, better, kinder, and a little bit fatter. Stay inside, stay safe

2020 04 03 Retrieve

[Mythbuster: ‘Fraudiola’! Pep is nothing without Messi] They gave me all the prestige I have in England. In that first season, when it was ‘fraud’ Guardiola, ‘Fraudiola’, and [people were saying] it’s not possible to play [my way] because you need to have [more] tackles, these players gave me the prestige I have. Now all around the world people say how good a manager I am, so, it’s because of them, not because of me.

2020 04 04 Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola addresses the club’s fans] We miss football. We miss the life that we had a few days ago but now is the time to listen, to follow our scientists, doctors and nurses. You are my football family and we are going to do everything possible to make you feel better. We’ll come back from this stronger, better, kinder … and a little bit fatter. Stay inside, stay safe

2020 04 06 Retrieve

[Manchester City confirm Guardiola’s mother dies after contracting coronavirus] The Manchester City family are devastated to report the death today of Pep’s mother Dolors Sala Carrio in Manresa, Barcelona after contracting coronavirus. She was 82 years old. Everyone associated with the club sends their most heartfelt sympathy at this most distressing time to Pep, his family and all their friends

2020 04 17 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola to the press prior to Alcantara’s signing] I spoke to the club about my concept and told them why I want Thiago. He is the only player I want. It’ll be him or no one

2020 05 04 Retrieve

[Fate of the European Super League will define the future of football] I do not agree much with the idea. Someone should explain to me. If it happens we’ll kill the leagues. If Barca and Madrid go and they do not play against Espanyol, who will follow the league? The Spanish league will die. In England they are very intelligent, the grounds of the fourth division are full. England will not let this essence of local football die

2020 05 08 Retrieve

[What is tiki-taka? How tactics made famous by Barcelona and Spain work] I loathe all that passing for the sake of it, all that tiki-taka. It’s so much rubbish and has no purpose. You have to pass the ball with a clear intention, with the aim of making it into the opposition’s goal. It’s not about passing for the sake of it.

2020 05 14 Retrieve

[How Guardiola was shaped by Brazil’s 1982 World Cup failures] This Selecao was one of the greatest that existed with regard to all its wonderful players: Eder, Zico, Junior - it was an extraordinary Selecao. If, after so many years, people remember that team, it’s because it was so good. I don’t know if some champions are remembered as much as that team. A team is good when 20, 30, 40 years pass, and they are still talked about it. And when people speak, it is because it generates such emotion

2020 05 15 Retrieve

[The Games That Defined Modern Football: Masnou 2-2 Barcelona B (2007)] I thought I had to change because we could not play in that way. I arrived Tuesday and I said we have to change because the pitches are so small. I doubted for two days. It was an important moment because I was new, I was not experienced

When I went to Barcelona and Bayern Munich, and even here in Manchester, when they say to me, ‘You cannot play like that here’, always I think, ‘If I was able to do that in artificial conditions, I can do it here’. I thought that a lot of times in my first season [in England], when it wasn’t going well I thought, ‘We can do it, because we did it there’. You just insist, insist, insist and do it better. The fact is there, I had the fact in that year. That’s why I could have changed, but I felt it in my skin, and I saw it, that we can do it

2020 05 19 Retrieve

[Angelino was the odd man out and was allowed to leave in the transfer window] In the final third in the box he is one of the most clever guys we have in the squad

2020 05 25 Retrieve

[Guardiola happy to be back at Man City and urges fans to stay safe] All the fans around the world are waiting for football to come back. We want to come back but now the priority is other things. The message is still stay safe, be careful and when everything is possible we will come back. First I think without [the fans], but hopefully we come back to a routine. But now the most important thing is to follow the instructions. If they say use a mask, stay at home, social distance - we have to do it. Because there are many, many people in the NHS, who put their own lives at risk to save ours. It’s incredible what they have done, and we have to follow them. Now, we cannot do anything wrong

[Among the training group were Aymeric Laporte and Leroy Sane] It’s nice to come back of course. We follow the rules we have to. This is the most important thing. We don’t do anything special. [The players are] really good. I think they have been looking forward to coming back and training again and do what they like. They came back perfectly.

2020 06 10 Retrieve

[Manager Pep Guardiola is out of contract in June 2021, although the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss reiterated his commitment in the wake of UEFA’s sanctions] Unless they sack me, which can happen, I will not leave. Why should I? I love this club, I like to be here, and after we have seen the sentence [appeal] we will focus on what we have to do. I want to stay to continue to help the club and maintain this level as long as possible. That’s not just because I have a contract, we want to fight to the end for the people who support this club.

2020 06 12 Retrieve

[Foden is the man to replace David Silva] David Silva is going to leave this season and we are not going to buy any player in his position because we have Phil Foden.

2020 06 16 Retrieve

[Guardiola defends Manchester City star Walker over lockdown controversy] I judge my players with what happens on the pitch. I think Kyle made a brave statement. What I want is the best for him and especially his family. His wife and kids, parents - that is what we want. As a human being that always goes first [rather] than the football player, and I think Kyle expressed his thoughts in his statement.

If you ask me how the team is, I don’t know. Tomorrow we will see the level. From there, we are going to see and suggest what we can do better. All Premier League teams have three weeks. Of course we know it is not enough but it is what it is. We are ready to play one game, but three days after another, four days after another, we are not ready. That’s why you have to rotate. But we have to start, we have to finish the season, because the damage economically can be reduced

2020 06 16b Retrieve

[Guardiola feels Premier League clubs haven’t been given enough time to prepare for football’s return] If you ask me how the team is, I don’t know. Tomorrow we will see the level. From there, we are going to see and suggest what we can do better. All Premier League teams have three weeks. Of course we know it is not enough but it is what it is. We are ready to play one game, but three days after another, four days after another, we are not ready. That’s why you have to rotate. But we have to start, we have to finish the season, because the damage economically can be reduced.

[He would love to be able to share an evening tipple with Arteta but was unsure if that would be permitted] We sent a message one hour and a half ago. I can’t tell you what that message said. It’s about the wine we’re going to drink after the game, if social distance allows us to drink

At the end, the Premier League like in Spain and Germany, like other countries, decide we have to play, so we are going to play. We are going to adapt as quick as possible

2020 06 16c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola believes new assistant coach Juanma Lillo is exactly what he needs to help Manchester City back to their form of the last two years] When Mikel decided to go to London to be Arsenal manager, I felt I needed someone to help us with this amount of games but I wanted to have time to take the right decisions. I discussed it with [football director] Txiki [Begiristain], with friends, about the solution. I decided on Juanma because I know him and what I need. I think he is the right person to help us, to understand the game better, the mythology of the training sessions. I have known him for a long time ago, like he helped me understand the way he looks [at it], and that’s why he is going to come here. I’m pretty sure he is going to help me and help us sustain the level we had in the last years

We are going to finish this season. We have two months and then we have time to talk about this. Like I said since the first day, how delighted I am here, how I like to do my job, how comfortable I am. I don’t have any complaints about what the club offer me from day one. About extend or not, we will see, we have time

He will stay until the end of the season and yes it is unfortunate that he is going to finish his last games here without people. But he is coming back and hopefully he can have the big farewell with people. Always the clubs become a big club when they make the big gestures to these players for what they have done for more than one decade. It was Vincent Kompany, it was Joe Hart, Yaya Toure, Pablo Zabaleta. I would say more, sorry for the guys I forget, but they make the club what it is. The situation is what it is. No one wants it. The club will make an agreement with David and do what they have to do.

2020 06 16d Retrieve

[Guardiola praises Rashford and Sterling for taking a stand] Because maybe these stupid people don’t believe you are human beings too. We can have an opinion the same as a nurse, a doctor or even a politician. What we are, we are humans and why shouldn’t we say our opinion when you believe you can make a better society, when you are public. What Raheem Sterling has done many times, players in our club, Marcus Rashford or whoever, of course they have to use these platforms to make a better society. They don’t need to get more money - fortunately for them they have enough - so they do it to get a better place to live, for their families, for our kids, for the next generations. So that is always why, when the people say it is not enough, of course it isn’t but let’s start from here. I admire a lot these kind of gestures because they do it for all of us

I would like to say too, how pleased I am for all the clubs in the Premier League that didn’t ask the government for money. In Spain, it didn’t happen. All we can do for these people, we have to do it but not just with applause but good actions because maybe it is coming back and in that moment they can be safer and protected better to do their jobs even better to save our lives like they have done. So a big compliment. Thank you so, so much. I will never forget what the NHS and health workers all over the world have done to keep us safe, working in incredibly difficult circumstances and situations to make our lives safer

2020 06 17 Retrieve

[Garcia injury mars near-perfect day for Manchester City against Arsenal] We are really concerned. [Garcia] responded quite well but we have to wait. He is conscious which is a good sign. We will make another test. In the beginning it was a lot of energy. Everybody wanted the ball. It was not quiet. We had chances. It was important to score before half time. I am happy with the performance of the team. I see in a good shape, the team, which is a good thing for the next few games. We have one eye on the next game. Aymeric Laporte was out for a long injury. We have players who play 50, 60 minutes which is good. And can maybe play the next one good

2020 06 17b Retrieve

[Guardiola speaks out on Black Lives Matter movement] White people should say sorry for the way we have treated black people for 400 years. We should send a thousand million messages for the black people. I’m embarrassed and ashamed of what the white people have done for the black people. How people can think they are different? All the gestures are good and positive. Everything we can do to make it conscious, it is not acceptable. We have to do a lot of things for the black people which we have not done so far

I see it as a massive step for the Premier League to allow something like that to happen and it shows we’re going in the right direction. Little by little we’re seeing change. It was natural, it was organic. We saw the teams do it in the earlier kick-off and thought it was something we had to do as well.

It’s been a confusing last couple of weeks. We’re all buzzing to be back in the stadium and put in a good effort. We expected it to be weird but the message after the break was to find something inside ourselves and dig deep. First 10 minutes we were getting used to the atmosphere but after that, I thought we controlled the game well.

2020 06 17c Retrieve

[Guardiola says David Silva will get proper farewell at Manchester City] Yeah, David will stay until the end of season. He will finish the last games without people, but hopefully he and the club can organise a proper farewell in front of people. Big clubs become incredible clubs when they make gestures to incredible players who have been here more than a decade. Like Vincent Kompany, Joe Hart, Yaya Toure … all these players, Pablo Zabaleta. Sorry for the names I forget, but they know who they are. The situation is what it is, no-one wants it, David especially. The club will make an agreement with David and do what they have to do

2020 06 17d Retrieve

[Guardiola’s loss is Arsenal’s gain: How Arteta is adding Man City DNA to improving Gunners] He loves Arsenal. He was there many years. It was a dream from day one to go back there, this challenge came and he had to take it

2020 06 18 Retrieve

[Face masks, fan-cams and flag-adorned stands: Premier League embraces its ‘new normal’] It’s weird, we missed the people. Playing without people is strange, we have to do it right now, the government say we have to but we have to be careful, we cannot relax. We are tested twice a week, social distance with masks and we do all we can to be protected

2020 06 18b Retrieve

[Man City defender Garcia out of hospital after nasty collision with Ederson] Garcia is conscious, but he is going to be tested tonight because a kick in the head is always so dangerous

[Garcia was making just his third Premier League start for the club and was surprisingly picked ahead of Fernandinho and Nicolas Otamendi] Eric came back incredibly well.

Eric came back incredibly well. He is so intelligent to guide the line. It was not easy to play against [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang. He is training really well and we tried to work with [coaches] Juanma [Lillo] and Rodolfo [Borrell] in this period. He understands perfectly well. This season, especially in the winter time, he always played good. He doesn’t make mistakes. He is always focused. In this game, we knew we were playing dynamic players. He understands the position and the movement. Against Burnley, for example, they play more long balls and we might need another kind of player. For this game, we thought he was the right guy to play alongside Laporte and they played really good

2020 06 19 Retrieve

[Sane to leave Man City] Leroy has said he doesn’t want to extend the contract. It means he wants to leave. It’s going to happen this summer or at the end of his contract. The club have offered him two or three times and he rejected so he’s going to play for another club. Leroy rejected to extend the contact and everybody knows that. If at the end of this season we agree between the two clubs he is going to leave, if not he is going to stay another year

2020 06 20 Retrieve

[Sane to Bayern talk can wait for Flick after Guardiola confirms winger will leave Man City] Leroy has said he doesn’t want to extend the contract. It means he wants to leave. It’s going to happen this summer or at the end of his contract. The club have offered him two or three times and he rejected so he’s going to play for another club. Leroy rejected to extend the contact and everybody knows that. If at the end of this season we agree between the two clubs he is going to leave, if not he is going to stay another year

2020 06 20b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola said Ederson’s ugly collision with Manchester City team-mate Eric Garcia is No [I have not spoken to Ederson about it]. The way we play, he has to play upfront and he has to react to the situation in a second. It’s part of football. Everybody knows that Ederson doesn’t want to hurt any opponent or a mate. It has happened.

[On Garcia] As you know, the Premier League rules with concussion in the head he has to have one week to 10 days off. We saw him yesterday after the game, he had a little bit of damage to his face. He slept in the hospital, he feels quite good after what happened with Eddy and we are happy he is back

[Guardiola will have no qualms if such a decision is made and said City will react to whatever call UEFA makes] We are going to adapt to what UEFA says. It is an extraordinary situation around the world, not just football. When the Premier League said we have to do it, we have to do it. If UEFA says that for health and security reasons, we are going to do it. We would love to play in the Etihad as normal but I think UEFA would rather for health and security reasons so we are going to adapt

2020 06 21 Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says he may have to sell before he can bring in the central defender he wants, casting fresh doubts over the future of John Stones] I don’t know that right now. The places I was - Barcelona, Bayern [Munich] and here - when the club say we cannot afford it, we cannot afford it, but I don’t know, it depends on the people who stay. Maybe in the next two months the team make a step forward and we will stay with the same people. I don’t know right now

[The future of Joao Cancelo and Leroy Sane] First, Leroy is our player. I don’t know if he is going to leave this summer or at the end of his contract but we have enough good players up front.

Gabriel can play on the left, Phil Foden can play on the left, we have Raheem there. We have big, talented players up front. Most of them are in good healthy conditions, like Phil, Riyad, Gabriel, Raheem, they can play quite regularly for a long period of time, they are so stable in terms of injury situations

I think we have other priorities maybe [in the transfer market]. I don’t know, after the coronavirus, if the situation economically and financially for the clubs is changing. I don’t know what the situation is. We’re going to see at the end of this season

2020 06 22 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola wants Benjamin Mendy to finally prove that he can cope with the demands of regular Premier League football] It’s our wish and his wish. He has a special quality with his energy. He came back so fit but it’s one game. Hopefully, he can play regularly. He’s a guy who missed a lot. Fabian Delph and Oleksandr (Zinchenko) and Danilo helped us a lot (when Mendy was out). I think it’s so important to have him, but we have to wait, it’s just one game. The quality for Benjamin is to go outside, but Mendy is also learning to go inside too. It’s about being fit. He loves playing football. He plays without pressure - he’s a guy who handles pressure really well. But we could not count on him for two years, it’s a long time

2020 06 22b Retrieve

[Sane successor not a priority for Guardiola as Manchester City boss admits spending fears] Firstly, Leroy is our player. I don’t know if he will leave in the summer or at the end of his contract. We have enough good players up front. Gabriel [Jesus] can play on the left, [Phil] Foden can play on the left. We have Raheem [Sterling]. Most of them are in good condition, like Phil, Riyad [Mahrez], Gabriel and Raheem. Players like that can play quite regularly for a long time. They are so stable in terms of injuries

I think we have other priorities, maybe. I don’t know if after the coronavirus, whether the financial situation for the club will change. We will see at the end of this season. In all the places I was - Barcelona, Bayern Munich and here - if the club says ‘we cannot afford it’, then we cannot afford it. It depends if people stay. Maybe in these next two months, the team makes a step forward and we decide to continue with the same people.

2020 06 23 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola fears that Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero may miss the rest of the season after he limped out of the 5-0 victory over Burnley with a knee injury] It doesn’t look good. We will see tomorrow exactly what he has but it doesn’t look good for the season. He was struggling the last month with a problem in his knee and now he felt something but it doesn’t look good. The doctor says it will take time. A few games [out] for sure but maybe tomorrow the tests he will get good news. We will see

When Phil plays, he’s never played badly. Especially his behaviour and his attitude. It doesn’t matter if he plays or doesn’t play, he loves to play football. You can see on his Instagram, when he is on a day off he is with his friends with the ball. He loves being the first out for a training session with the ball, he loves to play and every time he has played since he was promoted to play with us, he has always been a high level. But we cannot forget he is 19 or 20 and he has to improve. He will be an important player for our next decade at this club. The minutes he has, he deserves it.

2020 06 23b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Phil Foden will be an integral player for Manchester City over the next decade] We cannot forget he is 20 years old [and that] he has to improve. But he will be an important player for the next decade in this club. The minutes he has earned, he deserves it. Every minute he plays, it’s a joy to watch. His behaviour and his attitude [are excellent]. It doesn’t matter if he doesn’t play. When he plays, he never plays bad. I think every time he plays with us, since he was promoted, he [has] played at a high level

You’ll see on Twitter and Instagram, when he’s on his day off, he’s with his friends, with the ball. He loves to go on the beach, and just pass [it around]. He loves to play.

[When asked whether he agreed with Foden’s own assessment] I’m not going to discuss it with Phil. But I remember some games in the cup, he played quite similar. I’m happy for him and if he says that he feels it was his best performance, then perfect

2020 06 24 Retrieve

[Guardiola is proud of his players for using their position to make a difference off the pitch as well as on it] What Raheem Sterling has done many times, players in our club, Marcus Rashford or whoever, of course they have to use these platforms to make a better society. They don’t need to get more money - fortunately for them they have enough - so they do it to get a better place to live, for their families, for our kids, for the next generations

2020 06 24b Retrieve

[Manchester City striker Aguero confirms successful knee surgery] Once he finishes the surgery maybe we’ll know exactly the time when he can come back to join us and play with us. I don’t know right now [about the Champions League]. After surgery we’ll know exactly what the doctor sees and exactly what he has done. He will tell us more about the time to come back.

[The injury leaves City with only Gabriel Jesus as a recognised striker] We don’t have any doubts about Gabriel. The only doubt we have is because not one single player with the preparation we have can play every three days. We have Gabriel. Raheem can play in this position, even Gundogan and Bernardo [Silva] can play in this position. We have different options. Not like a striker but we can use them

We can’t deny that we have one eye on Newcastle. Chelsea and Liverpool are prestigious and important games but Newcastle is our game. A final for us. We have one eye on this but the other eye, the team selection depends on physical condition, the minutes they have played. We take a look a little bit at what is going to happen in the next games, not just Chelsea

2020 06 24c Retrieve

[Manchester City have no doubts over Gabriel Jesus’ ability after Sergio Aguero suffered a knee injury that required surgery] We don’t have any doubts about Gabriel. The only doubts we have is because not one single player with this preparation that we had can play every three days, which is now [a run of fixtures that is] going to happen. No one player in this team can play 90 minutes every three days. We have Gabriel but Raheem [Sterling] can play in this position, [Ilkay] Gundogan can, Bernardo [Silva] can, so we have different options - not all like a striker, striker - but different options we can use

[Asked if Jesus represented City’s future once Aguero’s contract expires at the end of next season] Gabriel plays with Aguero, being in the squad. Of course we want to keep him, we are delighted at what he is as a football player and as a person in the locker room with all of us, the backroom staff, he is an exceptional guy. We don’t have any doubts [about him] with Aguero or without Aguero now he is injured - we have two incredible strikers and we are happy to have them both.

[Guardiola has Sunday’s away FA Cup quarter-final clash with Newcastle United at the top of his immediate agenda] We cannot deny we have one eye on the Newcastle game. We know Chelsea and Liverpool are prestigious, important games but we know our game is in Newcastle. It is [like] a final for us. We have one eye in this situation but another eye of the team selection depending on the physical condition, the minutes they played the game before, the minutes they are going to play. So we will take a look at what happens next, not just the game against Chelsea.

We have to see day by day, game by game, the best players to play to avoid the injuries to arrive in our two incredibly important games that we have in the next period - it’s Newcastle next Sunday and especially [Real] Madrid now. And after that the players just have to handle the situation to qualify mathematically for the Champions League next season. We have an incredible position, good position to achieve it, that is what they have to do.

2020 06 24d Retrieve

[Guardiola wants squad fresh for Champions League amid anxious wait over Aguero] Right now we are all excited for the way we compete - it was always a little bit of a mystery the way we would play after a long time. All the teams think about this, but talking as the manager of Man City, we had doubts about what is going to happen and we’ve reacted well. But we are focused over the next two months ahead on first of all qualifying for the Champions League - that is the most important thing right now and these two victories over Arsenal and Burnley helped us to be close. After we have Newcastle and Real Madrid and these are the targets. For these we have to arrive with as much players in the best condition as possible which is why we want to avoid injuries and to rotate the team, depending on how many minutes they’ve played

Of course the impact is big - to win the Champions League you have to arrive in the right moment in the best condition as possible. But at the same time the situation is what it is, and sometimes when this happens teams make a step forward with the rest of the players to solve these situations and that is what we have to do. We have to wait and hopefully he can help us against Madrid and if we’re good enough to go through, maybe [he will be back] for the next rounds.

There are incredible players who can only play one position and Ilkay can play in many positions. Not as a striker as a main target but a striker, who can drop and play and get to the box. He is an outstanding player because he is so intelligent and intelligent players can play as full-backs, wingers, in the same time, the same role. We are disappointed for Sergio because we need him a lot. We have Gabriel and we don’t have any doubts about him as everyone knows, but of course we play a lot of games with a short time for recovery with a lack of preparation. That’s why we have to think about different options. Sterling can play there without a doubt, it’s an incredible position for him to play but in the same time Bernardo can play there. He played at Old Trafford in the Carabao Cup and had an incredible performance

2020 06 25 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has offered his congratulations to Liverpool as Jurgen Klopp’s side prepare to confirm their status as Premier League champions] I have other options. We have a few players injured. Listen, we cannot win titles. But we cannot deny this tough week. Congratulations to Liverpool, they have won it. Champions League qualification, we are in a good position so the FA Cup becomes important. We have three or four academy players on the bench. I think all the managers didn’t know how the teams would be after these exceptional situations. We got a good result [against Burnley] and that was the important thing

2020 06 25b Retrieve

[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has admitted that his side’s chase for a third successive Premier League title lacked passion] We won eight titles in a row which had never happened before in this country. It can happen to miss one. We lost Vincent Kompany to Anderlecht and had Aymeric Laporte injured. After we won those titles maybe we didn’t have the same passion as Liverpool. After two seasons the gap is big. We were not consistent like the previous seasons. Liverpool won the Champions League and were given confidence. They played every game like it was their last game. In the beginning, we didn’t play like that way. Congratulations to Liverpool for this great season. We still have five or six weeks to play but we won a lot in the last few years and of course we want to close the gap. We cannot forget we are still second in the league so we are better than a lot of the teams.

In terms of the game, we played good. Not a lot of pressure in the box. But we play in general a good game but our mistakes…

2020 06 26 Retrieve

[Speaking on his players’ fitness levels ahead of the 2018 Community Shield against Chelsea] We have just four or five days to prepare for the first final [Community Shield]. so we have to adapt. Some of them are coming back before, some are coming back after the final

2020 06 26b Retrieve

[Guardiola was impressed and the former Barcelona boss intimated that he sees Chelsea as title challengers next season] It was tight in both games [against Chelsea this season]. When we won 2-1 at home, they were more aggressive up front and here, they were more patient and waited for their counterattacks. They have incredible players in the middle and players who can run. So, yes, they did well and congratulations to Chelsea for the victory. Chelsea is a classic team in the Premier League and European football. On their bench is Jorginho, (Mateo) Kovacic, Pedro and (Kurt) Zouma. So, they have incredible guys in their squad, too, and then they have extra talent with Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech coming in this summer. That shows the [competitiveness] of the Premier League. Every season is tougher than the last and we are going to think about what we are going to do to improve.

2020 06 27 Retrieve

[What Pep Guardiola and Manchester City need to do to win back Premier League title] I had the feeling after Liverpool won the Champions League they were incredibly focused

2020 06 27b Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola declined to confirm his future at the Etihad Stadium beyond the end of the 2020-1 season as the club’s focus shifts to the FA Cup after losing their Premier League crown] I’m incredibly excited for this part of the season, and the next one. I am incredibly satisfied to be in this club and to try to do our best. But I don’t want to think too far ahead. Now is not the time. I just think about today. I want the players to recover because the last 15-20 minutes were so demanding 10 against 11. We have a tough game against Newcastle and that’s what I have to be focused on

[Pep faces something of a dilemma at centre-back for the last-eight meeting, having revealed that John Stones joins the suspended Fernandinho in missing out against the Magpies] He’s still injured. We knew it after lockdown for the lack of preparation. We knew it - lack of preparation and this amount of games in a short time we have to survive. Survive and try to qualify for the Champions League and arrive good on Sunday

2020 06 27c Retrieve

[Last-minute Liverpool] My son and my daughter, all the time when [Liverpool] win in the last minutes, ask me how lucky they are. It’s not lucky’. What Liverpool has done last season and this season many, many times is because they have this incredible quality and this incredible talent to fight until the end

2020 06 28 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola acknowledged his Manchester City side is bound to show more focus in their quest for FA Cup and Champions League glory after seeing the defence of their Premier League title officially ended] After the defeat in London against Chelsea, of course now in the Premier League we’re struggling a little bit to focus. We’re playing for qualification to the Champions League, it’s not done but we’re close, we need two victories. But, of course, now the FA Cup and Champions League it’s a little bit different for the fact we’re playing at Wembley again, we were winners last season, we are in the semis again and that’s so, so good. Then we prepare for the end of the season against Madrid

First we are in the semi-final, it was not easy to attack against defenders so, so deep. It was a solid performance, we conceded few [chances]and we are happy to be going back to London to Wembley

2020 06 28b Retrieve

[Man City will give Liverpool deserved guard of honour] We are going to do the guard of honour, of course. Always we receive Liverpool, when they came to our house, in an incredible way. They cannot complain. Of course we are going to do it because they deserve it.

[The ex-Barcelona boss is confident he knows why City came up well short in their bid for three in a row] I did not say [City played] without passion. Don’t put words I didn’t say. I don’t know the passion from Liverpool. I guess, I imagine what happened, when you are three-zero years without winning the Premier League, after winning the Champions League you are focused on that. But I didn’t say this. Because a team that wins eight titles (including the 2018 and 2019 Community Shields) has passion. In every single game, every single competition. No one in this country can say that [City don’t have passion]. It is so difficult what we have done in the most difficult league by far in the world. In sport you have to live for the future, the next, but you have to have a little bit, one eye, on what we have done. Don’t forget we are an incredible club and an incredible organisation. What we have to do is learn. I think we know the reason why we suffered this season and we’re going to try to solve it next season

[Goals from Gabriel Jesus and Kevin De Bruyne established a 2-1 advantage over Zinedine Zidane’s men at the Santiago Bernabeu back in February] Of course, we have a big challenge for these two titles. We fought for the Carabao Cup with the way we played and won the Community Shield against the champions of Europe. We are going to try at Newcastle to win and prepare for the last games of the Premier League, and arrive in the best conditions possible for Madrid

2020 06 28c Retrieve

[It has been suggested City’s hunger or passion may have dipped following last year’s treble success but Guardiola insists that is not true] A team that wins eight titles (trophies) in the last three years have passion, in every single game, in every competition, everywhere. No one in this country can say that. t is so difficult to do what we have done in the most difficult league in the world but you cannot win all the time. There was one team that was exceptional and, when one team is exceptional, I say learn from them and congratulate them. It is simple. This team’s passion and desire, it is going and going and going again

[Pep targeting FA Cup semis] Right now it is a priority because it is the next game and we can get Wembley again in the semi-final. I saw Newcastle and they have the weapons to punish us. The important thing is this game and after you can finish the Premier League as best as possible, finish second, and after that we have time to prepare for Real Madrid. James Milner

2020 06 28d Retrieve

[Liverpool took the Premier League crown City have worn for the last two years when they ended their own 30-year quest for a league title last Thursday, after Guardiola’s side were beaten at Stamford Bridge] Of course we are going to do it. Always we receive Liverpool when they come to our house in an incredible way. They cannot complain and, of course, we are going to do it because they deserve it

2020 06 29 Retrieve

[Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling booked Manchester City’s place in the last four of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win at Newcastle] We are delighted after the defeat against Chelsea to be in London again at Wembley to play against Arsenal in the semi-final to try to reach the final of the FA Cup. Always it’s an incredible trophy and it gives us an extra bonus. We spoke after what happened in the Premier League - we need two more victories to qualify for Champions League. But we have two competitions we can win. We made the first step today. It will be good to arrive against Real Madrid in the best condition. To win this title would be the best way to prepare for Madrid

2020 06 29b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has challenged his Manchester City players to prepare for their Champions League showdown with Real Madrid by winning the FA Cup] We are delighted after the defeat against Chelsea to be in London again at Wembley to play against Arsenal in the semi-final to try to reach the final of the FA Cup. Always it’s an incredible trophy and it gives us an extra bonus. We spoke after what happened in the Premier League - we need two more victories to qualify for Champions League. But we have two competitions we can win. We made the first step today. It will be good to arrive against Real Madrid in the best condition. To win this title would be the best way to prepare for Madrid

It was a fantastic goal from Raheem. For the penalty, I didn’t see the review. Gabriel Jesus could have headed the ball and I think the opponent pushed him. De Bruyne is definitely reliable and hopefully he can carry on because we struggled a lot this season with this

2020 06 30 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has confirmed City will give Liverpool a guard of honour at the Etihad] Of course we are going to do it. We are going to do the guard of honour, of course. Always we receive Liverpool when they come to our house in an incredible way. They cannot complain and, of course, we are going to do it because they deserve it.

2020 06 30b Retrieve

[City boss Pep Guardiola recently admitted that he was disappointed that Sane had turned down a new deal with the club] I’m so disappointed. When we make an offer it’s because we want him; he’s got a special quality that is difficult to find. We tried before the injury [and] the surgery and after that and he rejected this offer. He has other wishes and I understand [but] we want players who want to commit and achieve our targets. I love him so much, he’s incredible, I’ve nothing against him - he wants another adventure

2020 07 01 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola has confirmed Manchester City will give Liverpool a guard of honour when the teams meet on Thursday] I’m not sure if I ever got one [at Borussia Dortmund]. I’m not 100 per cent sure but it is a long time ago that I won in Germany. I don’t know if it’s a German tradition, but it’s an English tradition so we will take it. It is a nice gesture, 100 per cent. I wouldn’t need it to be honest because we go there to win a football game and don’t celebrate things that happened a week before, but it’s a nice gesture. That’s it pretty much

I like it that the AFCON was postponed but what I don’t like is the reasons for it. The African continent feels that it is not possible to have a tournament there, which I don’t like obviously. But from a planning point of view it makes sense and for us, it helps because we don’t have to consider this tournament at that moment. The tournaments that are in the middle of the season are not cool for planning. We have three of the best, if not the three best, African players in our squad.

2020 07 02 Retrieve

[Jadon Sancho Manchester City return makes ‘no sense’] No, no, no. He decided to leave. Why should he decide to come back? We wanted him to stay like Eric Garcia and Phil (Foden) but he decided like Leroy now and myself, when I decided to move to other countries to be a manager, to move. When he decided to move to Dortmund it’s not because he is going to decide to come back one year later. It would make no sense. He didn’t want to be here, so that is why I think he doesn’t want to come back here

[City failed to replace Vincent Kompany last summer and another veteran performer in David Silva will leave at the end of the current campaign] It’s part of the process. We’d like to stay with the players who gave us what they did for the last decade, those of the last 10 years to be eternal, but we grow in years and sometimes we have to do it and replace them with new players. For the absence of Vinny, David - and Fernandinho and Sergio (Aguero) have one year left, and I don’t know if they will extend or not - some players have to be replaced. But it’s not a disaster thing, or bad thing, it’s part of football for the age, for the normal situation and circumstances

2020 07 03 Retrieve

[Guardiola has no doubt Foden is now ready to fill the void the imminent departure of David Silva will create and has also tipped him to shine in Southgate’s England side] All the managers around the world love to work with good players. I am more than satisfied with him. It is an incredible reality. It is incredible news for us, for Manchester City, we have this player for the next years. I don’t want to say anything wrong but Gareth Southgate has an incredible talent for the national team in his hands. I saw many players in my life. I was training with incredible players and Phil will be one of them

2020 07 03b Retrieve

[Speaking to Guardiola earlier this week, his eyes are firmly fixed on more silverware this season] I am not thinking about winning the next Premier League. We have won two trophies this season and we have two more ahead of us. I never start a season with the dream of winning this title or that one, the only dream is to see the team getting better. This is what we have to do

2020 07 03c Retrieve

[Premier League champions Liverpool were brought back down to earth as they were thrashed 4-0 by Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium] We beat the champions, an extraordinary team. We are brave to play, they are brave to play. My team I like every single game. We tried to play football, take risks. The best team I have ever faced in my life at high pressing. We had the courage to play in the small spaces. It is important. I saw the guard of honour, how they work inside, how focused they were. They didn’t even say thank you because they were focused. They drank a lot of beers this week but they arrived here with no beers in their blood which is why I give us a lot of credit

2020 07 05 Retrieve

[Ralph Hasenhuttl hails ‘best ever’ Southampton home display in win over Manchester City] It was a really good performance but it was a résumé of this season. We made a mistake and they punished us. We’ve lost a lot of games like this, and if you do that you can’t compete to win the Premier League. We use our goalkeeper in the build-up to play better. The mistake was part of the game, but we didn’t lose because of that reason. He gives us a lot to play better, but we have to improve. This has happened many times this season. The number of chances that we had, we have to try to score more goals

We’ve scored the most goals in the Premier League and we’ve created a lot of chances this season, but we’ve lost a lot of games. It’s hard even for me to find a reason why, but we have to look at the way we play and try to concede as few as possible. In the games we’ve lost, we’ve been more than good, but it’s not been enough

I still have confidence in the players as it is the same people who have won titles in the past. The way we’re playing this season is quite similar but we’ve been losing games like we didn’t even do in the past three seasons

2020 07 05b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola confident Man City’s Champions League ban will be overturned] We are ready. I have a lot of confidence and trust with the people that we will be allowed to play the Champions League, because we want to be on the field during these years. On July 13 we will know the resolution, hopefully, for the club - all the workers, players and everyone here, staff - to try to continue growing up as a club in the next years. Every game is different but I cannot deny beating Liverpool the way we did (was good)

Football is about feelings, moments. Sometimes your mood is up, sometimes it is down when you face these games, but we can say we beat maybe the best team in the world right now. So we can do it. But every game is different, (FA Cup opponents) Arsenal play different, Madrid play different. Each game you have to adjust the qualities. What I want is to arrive in the best conditions possible to these games and after put mentality on the pitch. These games are not won with tactics or ideas, it is desire. We want to do it. When one team wants to do it - okay they can be beaten - but it will not be easy for the opponent

2020 07 06 Retrieve

[Manchester City crashed to a third successive away Premier League defeat as Che Adams’ first Southampton goal secured a hard-fought 1-0 win at St Mary’s] The Liverpool result is in the past. It was a really good performance but it was a résumé of this season. We made a mistake and they punished us. We’ve lost a lot of games like this, and if you do that you can’t compete to win the Premier League

We use our goalkeeper in the build up to play better. He gives us a lot to play better, but we have to improve. This has happened many times this season. The number of chances that we had, we have to try to score more goals

We’ve scored the most goals in the Premier League, but we’ve lost a lot of games. It’s hard even for me to find a reason why, but we have to look at the way we play and try to concede as few as possible

2020 07 06b Retrieve

[It is the first such run of Guardiola’s entire managerial career. City rallied but could not find a way past a resolute Southampton defence and the result means only Chelsea in the current top eight have lost more] In general the games we played are more than good. We play more than good but it is not enough to win the games. We cannot say we are not a team who score goals this season. We are leading in goals. We create a lot of chances. We are a team who concede less, no team conceded as few chances as us but we lost a lot of games. It’s difficult even for me to find a reason why but you have to insist and talk abut the game, the way they play and try to be more, concede as less as possible and up front score

2020 07 07 Retrieve

[John Stones: Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola casts doubt over defender’s future] I’ve said many times, and continue saying, I’m more than delighted with John Stones as a person, as a professional, everything. What I want is the best for him and at the end of the season we are going to speak about what is going to happen, because sometimes my wish is not the wish of the players, or the wish for the situation of the club. I am honest with them and the moment I will feel - not with John but any player - if we have to change we are going to tell them

[Guardiola admits it is important for Stones to stay fit and try to build a run of games] Of course, what we want is, for his future and for ours, for him to come back and play and to be able to train during two, three or four months with no injuries. John has struggled with his injuries

2020 07 07b Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola hopes Lionel Messi stays at Barcelona] I am not going to speak until the end of the season. My wish is that Messi is going to stay at Barcelona

[When asked what has been missing in key matches] Our consistency, not converting our gameplan and the way we played into results. In this business, you have to win. When you lose nine games you cannot win the Premier League, maybe years ago but not now. The champions always have to score above 90 points. I was not able to solve this problem we had since the beginning. I remember the game against Tottenham at home (in August). They had two shots on target, we had more than 20, and we drew. Southampton was quite similar and I was not able to change this dynamic in many games

When we can play the way we can and we are consistent in both boxes, we will have a big opportunity to go through. But if it happens like in Southampton, Tottenham away and home, Norwich away, games where we dropped points, we’ll be out. Arsenal will be int the final and Madrid will go through. Hopefully we can be lucky to convert what we produce. I don’t have any doubts the team will be there to compete.

2020 07 08 Retrieve

[Premier League drinks break - is it fair?]]</b> Would I like it to stay next season? No. We did it because of the lack of preparation for all the teams, we had just two or three weeks before the start of the competition and because of the weather conditions. It was for the lack of physical conditioning and the managers used it to talk to their players

2020 07 09 Retrieve

[David Silva reminded onlookers of just what Manchester City will be missing next season as he starred in a 5-0 demolition job over Newcastle] It was another good performance and today, we scored the goals that we missed in the last game. We created more chances in the game against Southampton, but we could not convert. But the team is always there. We are preparing for the games against Arsenal and Real Madrid

2020 07 10 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City’s focus is on Real Madrid, not Champions League last eight] In this organisation there is no one individual who knows Real Madrid better than me. They are the dominant team in the Champions League and we have to focus on them. We think about Real Madrid. We think about Real Madrid. If we think about the next step when we are playing against the king of this competition, they will put us out

[The Court of Arbitration for Sport’s decision regarding the club’s appeal against a European ban is expected on Monday] When we came back to play, our target was to qualify for the Champions League for next season. We have dropped points in a couple of games and we played well in those games but we know the business is about results. We have some difficult games left to play but we have to make sure we are in the Champions League again next season.

2020 07 10b Retrieve

[Earlier on Friday, City head coach Pep Guardiola said he was confident that his side will participate in the Champions League next season] The intention every season is to play in the Champions League and do the best possible. It is not about what will happen on Monday. I’m confident because I saw the arguments of the club that next season we will be there but we have to wait and after I give my opinion or the club will give their statement

2020 07 10c Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Man City coming second in Premier League is better than winning domestic cups] This organisation wants to win titles, so of course this is not the perfect satisfaction but it’s recognition that our opposition was incredible in this competition and we were not on that level. This organisation wants to win titles, so of course this is not the perfect satisfaction but it’s recognition that our opposition was incredible in this competition and we were not on that level. We were not the best, another team was, but we were better than the other 18 teams. This is the target to finish this season

It has helped all the teams because all the clubs have had a lack of preparation, just two or three weeks, which is not much to play every two or three days. In the last 20, 30 minutes [of matches], when you have a lack of preparation, you suffer and that [extra subs] helps to maintain players’ fitness. Maybe for next year if it happens, it will be good. You can travel with not just 18 players [including] on the bench, but 20, as happened this season. It would be good for the health and mood of the team. Everybody feels involved and part of the team, and you can make more rotations, so it will be good.

[The Spaniard is out of contract at the Etihad next year, although he has suggested in the past he is happy to stay at City, something he has again indicated] I like to be here. I enjoy every single day, even in this season where we had to struggle hard to get results in the Premier League. I feel as though the players want to fight and still have the desire to win in this last part of the season and we will see for next season

2020 07 11 Retrieve

[Raheem Sterling is enjoying his best season in front of goal after his hat-trick inspired Manchester City to a 5-0 victory at Brighton] I was pleased with everything tonight - the result and the levels we reached. We are now at a good level and are ready to play the last games of the Premier League and in the Champions League. We’ve forgotten the Southampton result (1-0 defeat last Sunday) as we played incredibly well there. Football sometimes is strange. We just didn’t score there. We’re a team who create a lot of chances and today we converted them

We’ve qualified for the Champions League which was the minimum requirement for this club. And these players have done it for the last six or seven years. We won it on the pitch and hopefully on Monday UEFA will allow these players to play next season. They deserve to be in the Champions League

2020 07 12 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola: Manchester City ‘deserve’ to be in next season’s Champions League] Today we achieved one incredible challenge, which is qualification for the Champions League mathematically. That is the challenge that is the minimum requirement for this club. And these players have done it for the last six or seven years. We deserve to be there because we won it on the pitch. Hopefully on Monday UEFA can allow us to play like this team and these players deserve to.

[Speaking at his post-match press conference, City boss Guardiola revealed he is extremely optimistic about receiving positive news on Monday] It’s the decision, so it’s so important, of course it is. What we have done is win our qualification on the pitch. Nobody can doubt about this. In general the level we played today was quite similar all the season and now we are going to wait until Monday when the decision of UEFA will be taken.

[Guardiola says his team are now ready for the final stages of the season] I was pleased with everything tonight - the result and the levels we reached. We are now at a good level and are ready to play the last games of the Premier League and in the Champions League. We’ve forgotten the Southampton result (1-0 defeat last Sunday) as we played incredibly well there. Football sometimes is strange. We just didn’t score there. We’re a team who create a lot of chances and today we converted them

2020 07 14 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola says Manchester City deserve apology after CAS overturned European ban] We should be apologised [to]. If we did something wrong, we will accept the decision. But we have the right to defend ourselves when we believe what we have done is correct. Three independent judges said this. Yesterday was a good day for football, because we played with the same Financial Fair Play rules as all the clubs in Europe. People said we were cheating and lying, and many times the presumption of innocence was not there. This club has tried for all history to do our best on the pitch. What we have done in the last decade is because of what happened on the pitch

The elite clubs have to understand we deserve to be here. We want to go on the pitch and compete with them. We deserve to get stronger year by year. We have incredible people working in this club to make our fans proud. We don’t have to ask permission to be there; we deserve to be there. When we lose I will shake the hand of my opponent and will congratulate them. Guys, accept it. If you do not agree, just knock the door of our chairman or CEO and talk. Don’t go from behind, whispering, like six, seven, eight, nine clubs do. Go and do it on the pitch. Let’s go. We invest a lot of money, like a lot of clubs. But we did it on the right things - if not, we would have been banned. And we are not banned, because we followed the rules of Financial Fair Play.

[The City boss issued a sarcastic response to his fellow Spaniard] Senor Tebas must be so jealous of the Premier League and English football. He’s an incredible legal expert. Next time we are going to ask him in which court and which judges will have to go. He has to worry about La Liga and focus there. But when the sentence is good for him, it is perfect - like what happened many times in Spain right now. But when the sentence is against, the problem is for the other ones. We will be in the Champions League next season, Senor Tebas, because what we did, we did it properly

2020 07 15 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola insisted at his pre-match news conference that City deserved an apology after CAS overturned their two-year ban from European competition] We should be apologised [to]. If we did something wrong, we will accept the decision. But we have the right to defend ourselves when we believe what we have done is correct. Three independent judges said this. Yesterday was a good day for football, because we played with the same Financial Fair Play rules as all the clubs in Europe. People said we were cheating and lying, and many times the presumption of innocence was not there. This club has tried for all history to do our best on the pitch. What we have done in the last decade is because of what happened on the pitch. The elite clubs have to understand we deserve to be here

2020 07 15b Retrieve

[Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho can call him to discuss FFP ruling] If they want to talk, I’m here. The sentence from the three independent judges was clear. But, if they want, they know my telephone number, they can call me and I can explain. It’s not a problem at all. But I think we don’t have to discuss a lot because the sentence was clear. All the suggestions that we were lying or cheating, it was not like this. We were clean, like they say are

[Guardiola, whose future in Manchester had been in doubt amid the possibility of the ban, said he is delighted for his squad, who will retain the opportunity to play in Europe’s top competition] I am incredibly happy for them. They are the reason why we are in the Champions League next season because of what they have done on the pitch. Off the pitch, maybe, other clubs are better, but on the pitch we were quite good the last three or four years, and we will defend what we won on the pitch next season in Europe.

2020 07 15c Retrieve

[Asked about John Stones’s performance] John Stones was really well in defensive areas, strong in the air, and played a really good game

2020 07 16 Retrieve

[David Silva provided a masterclass as he heads towards his Premier League swansong in Manchester City’s 2-1 win over Bournemouth, which edged the plucky Cherries closer to Premier League relegation] It was a really difficult game, they played really well, even in the first half. They are playing for important things, and I give a lot of credit to what they’ve done. John Stones was really well in defensive areas, strong in the air, and played a really good game. [David Silva] is in incredible condition, in top condition. The way he is playing is really good, with the ball, without the ball, the second goal, the free-kick, yeah. He’s playing really, really well. He’s decided to go, so hopefully he can find the place he wants to play his last years.

2020 07 16b Retrieve

[Man City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak and UEFA hold peace talks] We should be apologised [to]. If we did something wrong, we will accept the decision. But we have the right to defend ourselves when we believe what we have done is correct. Three independent judges said this

2020 07 17 Retrieve

[Pep Guardiola: Mikel Arteta can make Arsenal contenders again] I expect a tough, tough game. They [Arsenal] have something special already, they have a team spirit Mikel has created. I see from the side how they celebrate goals, how they fight for every ball. They have begun to create something special for the club. We approach Arsenal like we do the other ones. Arsenal were one of the elite clubs in English football for the last 20, 30 years. I am pretty sure the right person to take them back to the position they were. When the club supports him there is no better person to do the job than Mikel. I have the feeling he is creating something unique. If he can be supported by the club with investment, get the players they need, they can be contenders for the next years

I have a incredible respect for him and his career. He is an exceptional player with an incredible mentality, especially personality. I laugh at all the pundits, they were defenders and they didn’t make one mistake in their careers when they played 10 or 15 years. I like he is still playing football and I am pretty sure he is going to make more good actions and mistakes, it’s part of the game. I have a lot of respect for this player.

[Number two Claudio Bravo has regularly played in domestic cup matches but the Chile goalkeeper is currently sidelined with a muscular problem] We are playing Ederson. Claudio is a little bit injured. In the last days he was not on bench - he has muscular problems and can’t play