Tags Posts tagged with "Pep Guardiola"

Pep Guardiola

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Chelsea manager Antonio Conte spoke before tomorrow’s clash against Arsenal: the two teams arrives with a different spirit to this really important derby, with the Gunners coming from a home defeat with Watford and nine points under Chelsea in the table, where they sit third with 47 points along with Spurs, and the Blues coming from a good draw with Liverpool away, still leaders with 56 points:

“For sure the result was good but honestly at the end we were a bit disappointed,” the Italian boss said about the recent game against the Reds.

“It´s not easy to get a result in Anfield against a really good team like Liverpool.”

“Arsenal is a great team, for sure they have the chance to fight for the title until the end, now Liverpool game is gone and now it´s important to be focused only on the next game.”

Continuing to speak about tomorrow’s derby, he said:

We must pay great attention because they are a great team, it will be a very tough game.

“We are nine points clear, but if we lose tomorrow the points are six, we are playing good football, with good intensity. Tomorrow we have a great opportunity to show this.”

Asked if something changes with Wenger on the stands for a four-match-ban, Conte replied:

“I don´t know, I cannot reply this question because for sure I prefer to stay in the touchline to push my players and help them in the key moments of the gas, for me it´s very important and I don´t know about the others.”

According to some rumours, Diego Costa continues to receive offers from China, where the transfer window is still open, and many football and market experts reckon the Spaniard can move to Chinese Super League next summer:

“I don´t know, every week I have a lot of news and speculations about Diego, now the important thing is to be focused in this title race. Diego now is with us, summer is far, and it´s important to be prepared for this title race.

Speaking about the possible signing two Celtic players, Moussa Dembele and Ryan Gordon, who eventually stayed at the Glasgow side, Conte said:

“I’ve never talked with my club about Dembele, we tried [to sign] Gordon because we tried to satisfy Begovic and his requests, he wanted to play every game, but I told him he could leave only if we could find a substitute: Gordon was one of the goalkeepers in our list, we tried but when Celtic told us they couldn’t sell him, it was over.”

“During this transfer window we signed three young players: Ake, Kenedy and Musonda.

Ake played very well for one year and half in the league, I think now he´s more mature, he can improve with us and help us until the end of the season, the others are two young players but with good quality.”

Asked about Frank Lampard‘s decision to retire from football, Conte claimed:

“It´s a pity when a great player as Frank Lampard decides to end his career, because you lose a fantastic player, the whole world of football is disappointed when a player like him finishes his career, he played thirteen years for Chelsea, he gave a lot to this team, he played more than 100 times for the national team, but every player knows when it’s the right moment to finish his career. I have a lot of respect for him and what he did.”

About Lampard’s future, the Blues boss said:

“I don’t know his thoughts, it’s important to take a bit of time to make the best decision for you. I think Frank Lampard can decide what is the best decision for him.”

Continuing to speak about the game against Arsenal he said:

“I think if we win the game tomorrow for sure is a good hit for us because to improve your situation in the table, take three points and have a 12 points gap from Arsenal is very good. But tomorrow will be a tough game, we have to pay a lot of attention, Arsenal already beat us and it’s possible to repeat this, so we have to have max concentration, to have the same anger and most important of all we have to look at ourselves, not the others, like I always say to my players.

“I watched the game against Watford and sometimes the results don’t say the truth: I think they were a little unlucky, they had many chances to score, I think they are in a good shape, in a good form, the result is strange.

Conte changed his tactical system during the game with Arsenal at Emirates, a decision than then paid, since Chelsea were almost unbeatable after that defeat and had an incredible run of 13 wins in a row:

“It’s not simple, we know all the work we did in the past and what we are doing now, during the game against Arsenal, after ten minutes, I decided to change our system, because in my mind it was possible, we were seven points from Manchester City in that moment and what happened showed a situation can change very quickly and after twenty games the situation is very different, there are fifteen games and now we have to pay great attention.”

Conte was at London Stadium the other night to watch West Ham v Man City, with the Guardiola side beating the Hammers 4-0 still having Agüero on the bench and with a super Gabriel Jesus:

“When I have the chance I like to go to stadia to watch future opponents, I saw a really good team, but we all know Man City’s potential. I think the strange thing is their current situation, I think they have a great squad, a lot of fantastic players in the team, they played very well, Gabriel Jesus and Sterling played very well, all the team played very well. I am not so sure the league is finished, I know that we must pay great attention, there are 15 games to play and I think we must keep the right tension.

“We have to keep our attention very high, I have experience in this, I want to keep our concentration very high, we know that behind us we have a lot of great teams.”

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Speaking following his side’s 4-0 win against West Ham, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola insisted that Premier League title is in Chelsea‘s hands as Antonio Conte‘s side are currently leading the table with 56 points.

About the Italian manager Guardiola claimed: “He doesn’t have to be too worried because Chelsea are nine points ahead”,

“Only they can lose the Premier League” he ended.

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Continuing our chat with ex Chelsea goalkeeper Marco Amelia we asked him about transfer market, that is closing his winter window tomorrow night, with his friend Asmir Begovic on the brink to leave the Blues after 18 months:

*If I were him, I would stay: it’s difficult to leave a team like Chelsea in a season like this, he can add some silverware to his personal trophy cabinet and I don’t think he will miss this chance, even if I understand that he would like to play more.”

Diego Costa allegedly received offers during this transfer window from a couple of Chinese clubs, this is what Amelia thinks about the Spaniard’s situation, since there are chances he can leave next summer:

“I hope Diego Costa can stay, my wish is that he will stay next summer. If he will leave I guess it´s easier for him to go back to Spain: probably he does´t like London very much and I cannot get how he could like China, so I don´t think he will go there. But it won´t be easy to leave for him, because now he´s a leader, he feels this leadership, he feels important, so if he moves it won´t be an easy choice for him, it´s more difficult to change in this moment.”

In his time at Chelsea Amelia had the chance to share the dressing room with a legend like John Terry, with whom he´s still friend, and has got only words of praise and respect for the Blues captain:

“What I liked more about Terry is that he is a TRUE captain, he arrives to the training ground before anyone else, sometimes I tried to arrive before him but I never succeed! He always beat me! He leads by example, he takes care of himself, he acts like a a real professional and shows to his team-mates that to reach certain levels you have to behave like that. This is the best example he can give to his team-mates and to the youngsters.”

And speaking about youngsters and academy talents, Amelia revealed us who is the one that most impressed him:

“Among Chelsea youngsters who impressed me more is Ruben Loftus-Cheek,” the Italian goalkeeper said.

“He´s got incredible physical and technical skills, he can adapt to play in more roles and yes, I agree with Conte, he can play as a number 9: of course he doesn’t have the moves of a proper striker, he has to learn them, he has to get more experience and maybe he´s not so fast as a modern number 9 has to be. I guess it should be better for him and other youngsters that don´t get much playing time to go on loan somewhere else to play.”

Premier League is, in this moment, the most fascinating championship in the world and Amelia told us why, in his opinion, the English league was able to overcome Serie A, that was the best league in the world over a decade ago:

“First of all, the stadia are better: to have the fans so close to the pitch, without fences, it´s incredible and give the team lots of adrenalin, in Italy many stadia got the athletics track.

“Furthermore, in England there is less tactical exaggeration, the training sessions are more physical because you must be physically tough but you need also good technical skills and all this benefits good performances, the “Premier League show”.

“I had some managers that were too obsessed with the tactic and this damaged the performances, the freedom of the players to express their talents and the show”.

Speaking about managers and tactical magicians, we got now two of them managing the two sides of Manchester even if, until now, they probably didn´t fulfill all the expectations football fans had about their new adventures:

“I guess Mourinho will do very well at Manchester United, Amelia said about the ex Chelsea boss.

“When you have to put players like [Paul] Pogba and [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic into your squad and tactical system you have to find the squad balance again: they were a little unlucky in autumn, they lost many points and so the chance to be in the title race, but this happened because of what I just said and once they found their balance they started to play better and win. Usually, he wins and does better in the second year. One of his qualities is to make everyone feel important, so everyone is ready to fight if needed.

Guardiola, instead, got some issues to adapt to English football,” the 2006 World Champion says about the ex Barcelona and Bayern manager.

“Mainly because he is trying to bring a different mentality. I don´t think that this is arrogance, it´s just his way to work, he wants to bring his style wherever he goes.”

Thibaut Courtois, David de Gea and Manuel Neuer are, at the moment, in the world goalkeepers top 3 and when asked about who, among the youngsters, can reach their level, Amelia has got no doubt:

“Among the new goalkeepers I like very much [AC Milan´s] Donnarumma: he´s just 17 and already a top player, he´s got tons of personality.”

Amelia is 34 but has no intention to retire from played football: at the moment he is a free agent and trains with a team near Roma, where he currently lives with his family.

The Italian keeper, anyway, knows what would make him happy again:

“My dream is to come back to play in England: I was really close to join Sunderland last summer, but then I had to go back to Italy also for some personal issues, because there are things that are most important than football. I negotiated also with a Championship side and I hope to sign for some team there soon: I am free agent now and I can find a new team until the end of March.

“I cannot go to China or Arabic leagues because they got some rules for which they cannot sign foreign goalkeepers, USA are fascinating but when you have to take these decisions you have to think also about your family, so I would prefer England.”

Do we have a chance to see him at Chelsea should Begovic leave? Everything will be revealed tomorrow night.

(Click HERE to read the first part of our interview with Marco Amelia that was published on Saturday)

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Shocking announcement from a Chelsea rival, Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola.

Speaking to the NBC the ex Barcelona coach announced he is close to end his manager career:

“I will be in Manchester for at least other three years, but I feel the process to end my career has already started.

“I won’t coach until I will be 60-65 years old, I am sure I am getting close to my manager’s career end.”

Will Manchester City and Premier League be the last team coached by the Spanish manager or Pep will change his mind in the next three years?

 

 

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Manchester City manger Pep Guardiola speaking after his side’s away 3-0 win against Hull City, said that Chelsea and Liverpool are going to have an advantage due the lack of European competitions this season.

“Sometimes you play before Chelsea, sometimes later – Guardiola told medias after the game – But it doesn’t matter when one team has won 12 in a row. It’s like a final for us if you want to be there until the end of the season.”

“This time Chelsea and Liverpool are the ones. We have played seven more than them – and important games like the Champions League – which is why it will be tough”.

Anyway, Guardiola believes ‘football is unpredictable’. “We have to do absolutely everything to be there – he added - Sometimes when you believe something is done it isn’t. What we have to do is win every game and analyse and see if that is enough.”

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After Manchester City v Chelsea final whistle it seemed that Citizens‘ boss Pep Guardiola snubbed his ex player Cesc Fabregas, that walked toward him to shake his hand.

Anyway, the Spanish coach wanted to make clear that he simply didn’t notice the Chelsea midfielder on the pitch and that the pair greeted in the dressing room, away from cameras’ eyes:

“I said hello to Cesc in the dressing room. On the field I didn’t realise he was trying to greet me,” Guardiola said while speaking to the press ahead of City’s Champions League tie with Celtic tonight.

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Manchester City players Sergio Aguero and Fernandinho will face a three and four-game bans, respectively,  the FA has confirmed.

The Argentine striker was sent off after a horror tackle on Chelsea defender David Luiz, while the Brazilian midfielder was shown red following an altercation with Cesc Fabregas.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola defended Fernandinho, while remained coy about the decision on whether to start Aguero or not against Celtic in Champions League tomorrow night.

“There will be changes tomorrow, definitely,” he said. “I am so happy to give minutes to people who deserve to play and who did not play in the last games. 

“If Sergio is going to play or not, I am going to decide today or tomorrow. I don’t know at the moment.”

Ban

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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola analysed his team’s defeat against Chelsea.

First of all, he gave his opinion about Aguero’s horrible challenge on David Luiz in the injury time:

“It was not intentional, I don’t think so. If it’s a red card, it’s a red card. We accept that,” Guardiola said in his post-match press conference.

It’s a pity it finished like this. It’s the way the referee decided but it’s a pity. I don’t like that, I apologise for what happened. Fernandinho went to defend his team-mate.”

“We didn’t win because we missed a lot of chances, not because of the referee. Never in seven years have I blamed that referee,”

“My team have to be proud of what they did and the way they tried to play. In the box we are not strong enough. We arrive in the box and don’t score, the opponents arrive and they do score.”

 

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Chelsea winger Pedro spoke ahead of the clash against Manchester City at Etihad Stadium.

The Spaniard, who has been recently named for the Goal of the Month prize, told the club’s official website: “It’s good to be nominated for the awards but it’s not just me, the team are all in good form and full of confidence,”

“I’m working well with my team-mates and just looking to help the side by doing my best and scoring goals”.

“It was a beautiful goal against Tottenham and it came at the right moment in the game for us, it was very important for us to score before half-time”.

“It was a very tough game and in a derby it’s always good for the team to get a win, especially after going 1-0 down. We want to continue to play with this mentality and take it game by game. We are top of the league right now so that’s very good for the confidence of the team.”

Then Pedro added: “It’s very good to react well when you need to. Against Tottenham we started to press higher up the pitch and scored the winning goal in the second half: the team are performing well in every game, we are all working for each other, which is really important”.

About the team: “I feel very comfortable in the team. With Antonio we are working very hard and planning for the matches during the week. Now we face a very difficult game against Man City, it’s an important challenge for the team. We want to stay top but of course it will be difficult.”

About Moses: “Victor is playing very well, he’s on fire and performing well in every game,’ he adds. ‘In the last few matches he’s been our best player and it’s a pleasure for me to play with him on the right-hand side. He’s very compact, really strong and he has a lot of skill, he’s a complete player.”

About Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola: “My relationship with him is very good, he’s a very important person in terms of my career from our time at Barcelona. He was a very good coach for me”.

“He has very good ideas, he likes to press high and play from side to side, with people in between the lines looking to score goals. He’s a very good coach, they are a strong team and it will be a difficult game for us.”

Chelsea are set to face the Citizens at the Etihad Stadium today, and Pedro is confident that his side can earn another crucial win.

“I think he will probably tell them to press us high and make it difficult for us to play. He will want them to move the ball very quickly and look to create chances. It’s a tough game but we are doing very well, it’s a good moment for us and a good time to play this game”.

“It would be a big step for us if we can go four points clear of Man City. It would be very important for our confidence, It’s a big test for us and we’re looking forward to it.”

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Ivanovic, Aguero and Fabregas challenging for the ball in last year game at Stamford Bridge © Francesca Ceciarini

TEAM NEWS

Manchester City

– No fresh injuries concerns for Pep Guardiola

– Captain Vincent Kompany is the only notable absentee after being ruled for about another month with a knee injury.

– Midfielder Fabian Delph has not played since August but is training and nearing a return after a groin operation.

 

Chelsea 

– Only John Terry will be absent for a muscular injury in his gluteus that will rule him out for another couple of weeks

Antonio Conte will probably line up the same starting formation for the seventh consecutive game

– The Italian manager said two players were a doubt before travelling to Manchester but didn’t want to reveal their names

 

POSSIBLE LINE UPS

MANCHESTER CITY - Bravo, Sagna, Stones, Otamendi, Kolarov, Fernandinho, Toure, Sterling, De Bruyne, Nolito, Aguero.

 

CHELSEA - Courtois, Azpilicueta, Luiz, Cahill, Moses, Kante, Matic, Alonso, Pedro, Costa, Hazard.

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