Saturday 18 November 2017

Pep Guardiola views Manchester City as a 'small team,' claims his friend and author

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola shakes the hand of referee Lee Mason
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola shakes the hand of referee Lee Mason
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Pep Guardiola views Manchester City as a ‘second tier team’, according to a journalist who wrote a book with the former Barcelona boss.

Guardiola served up a series of grumpy interviews following City’s 2-1 win against Burnley on Monday, as he suggested he was already thinking about life away from football.

Now the comments of Spanish journalist Lu Martin - who penned a book with Guardiola in 2001 - fuel the suspicion that the coach hired by City last summer amid much fanfare is not convinced by the club’s potential.

“I am telling you what Guardiola thinks, they are like a second-tier team in the Premier League," Matin told Spanish radio station Cadena Ser.

“At the moment his challenge is Manchester City, who are a team like Villarreal in La Liga, for example, a team which is not one of the top sides. I am not giving my opinion.

“It is 30 years since Man City have won at Liverpool, for example. He sees it as a personal challenge, to compete against the biggest teams.

“In Spain and in Germany he was competing with a big team -- but in England the big teams are Chelsea, Manchester United, other teams. He has a team which is powerful but not the most powerful.

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“He will stick out his three years in the Premier League, and then maybe some more years, as he sees it as a personal challenge.”

Martin went on to label Manchester City as a ‘small team’ in comments that may not be welcomed by his colleague Guardiola.

“He is in England, with a small team, we must realise that, Manchester City is not the best team in England,” he added.

“There are many teams which can compete financially in England; Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea. He has come to England to compete and he is doing that.

“He has a phrase he says; in England there are two titles, the champion and being among the first four.

“But apart from that he as a coach is competing to make City win something, the Premier, the FA Cup, something, but he sees this as part of his life journey.”

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