"It is an honour to have him" - Pep Guardiola Pre Leicester Press Conference Recap
Updated: Aug 13, 2021
Ahead of Manchester City's Community Shield clash with Leicester at Wembley on Saturday, Guardiola spoke to the media about Grealish, Kane, and Messi.
First up, a question on new signing Jack Grealish.
"First of all, good morning. A pleasure to see all of you. He can play upfront of course, mainly in the left side area but can play as a winger, as an attacking midfielder,r as a striker. Many positions with his quality. I don't have any doubts that he will suit good with the way we play and his desire to be an exceptional player and even better than he already is. He arrives with incredibly positive things and ready to start to settle into the team and start to know him and he can know the club and the players and staff and the way we play and can provide for the next years. He has the best years of his career after making an exceptional contribution at Aston Villa where he did amazing. He can get to another level with us."
"He can get to another level with us."
More on Grealish.
"When we could spend this amount of money it is because we sell for almost £60m. We were not able in the last year or so but we sell young players from the academy and loan players for £60m. When you sell that, you can afford £100m. Otherwise, it would not have been possible. That's why for the difference we spend on him because he's 26 years old, he can play the next 5,6,7,8 years here and we believe we have an incredibly huge talent in terms of not just skills but mentality. When a team in the last years won a lot - which we cannot deny we have - we need new players. Not much but a few players that can rise to the level of players already here. The new players can fight with the players who stay here for a long time, otherwise, after a lot of titles, it is difficult to maintain a step forward. Every player needs to have the pressure that maybe they are not going to play. I say thank you so much to the club - especially Ferran, Khaldoon and Txiki - and thank you to Aston Villa and Jack who chose to come here because I'm pretty sure he could decide whatever he wants. He said he wanted to play for Man City and that's why it is an honour to have him and hopefully he can settle as quick as possible."
"He said he wanted to play for Man City and that's why it is an honour to have him and hopefully he can settle as quick as possible."
Bernardo Silva has been rumoured to leave and the boss was asked about this.
"He's our player. Not just Bernardo, there are two or three players that want to leave but they are our players and when they bring some offer and they want to leave we are open to discuss but it depends on them. Otherwise, they will continue training really well, they will stay here and I will decide if they stay or don't stay. The players who want to leave know the door is open because we don't want anyone here unsatisfied but they have to bring someone."
This was Pep's response when asked about Harry Kane.
"It's different from Jack. He had a release clause. Harry Kane is an exceptional, extraordinary strike - of course, we are interested - but he is a Tottenham player and if they don't want to negotiate there is nothing more to say. If they want to, we will try."
There was breaking news yesterday with the news Leo Messi will end his stay in Barcelona this summer. Asked about it, Pep said:
"We spent £40m on Jack Grealish. We paid £100m and brought £60m. He will wear the No.10 because we were convinced with Grealish and we were convinced Leo would continue at Barcelona, so right now he is not in our thoughts."
"It looked like it finished well in terms of him continuing with Barcelona. it was a surprise for everyone - me included. The president was clear today. I didn't speak with the player or the president so I don't know what has happened but as a supporter of the clbu I would love for him to have finished but today the club needs to be sustainable and what happened in the last year was really not good. As a fan, I ahve incredible gratitude for the most extraordinary player I ahve seen in my life, for the titles he helped to Barcelona, to help me personally to help me to go to Munich and then to England. More than that, the incredible amount of feelings and actions in front of the TV and watch what he can do with the ball, with his mates in one football game. Day by day, game by game, every three days he made something unique. All I can say is thank you so much to bring Barcelona to another level, to allow Barcelona to dominate the world for a decade, and I wish him the ebst for the last few years of his career. He will not be forgotten. Hopefully one day we can say the best every because he deserves it. But if president Laporta arrives in this situation, he should do it unfortuantely because someone before didn't do well."
"we were convinced Leo would continue at Barcelona, so right now he is not in our thoughts."
More on players leaving:
"The situation is like everybody knows. We could afford this amount of investment because we sold £60m because of the situation all around the world. I think the top clubs, the top English clubs can make one signing."
And finally, more mention of selling players to fund Grealish when asked if De Bruyne had a say in the transfer.
"It was a decision for the club, alongside the manager. He is a player at the club for the next five or six years. It happened because we could sell before. Without the £60m we could not afford it, and we are more than delighted to continue."