"No answer to your Erling Haaland questions..." – Pep Guardiola pre Brighton Press Conference
Pep Guardiola faced the media ahead of Brighton's visit to the Etihad Stadium tomorrow for an 8 pm (BST) kick-off as Manchester City look to maintain their slender lead at the top of the Premier League. The Catalan answered questions on Erling Haaland transfer speculation, the fitness status of Kyle Walker and others, and Nathan Ake's significant contribution in recent weeks.
Pep on Erling Haaland speculation:
"No answer to your questions. I have other concerns in my head. For many years, I dont talk/think about transfer windows especially when we have incredible things to play for."
Pep on his Liverpool FA Cup team selection:
"No [regrets]. I understand the opinions of my fans. My selection was for many reasons. They were ready. Kevin wasn't ready, Gundogan wasn't ready. I understand the questions, I was in the hotel in Madrid and in London, I spoke with my doctors and physios. We listen and take the decisions. We have a lot of info you don't have. If we were tired we wouldn't run in the second half. For many games, I ask a lot of my staff about the situations and moods of players. After I make the decisions."
Pep on squad fitness:
"Kyle [Walker], no [is not fit]. The other ones are better."
More on Dias:
"Ruben trained really good today and yesterday but we have to remember that he has been seven weeks off. When you recover you need tempo. He's intelligent, is a guy who knows his body. We are more than delighted he's back. Nathan made an incredible contribution, Ayme and John played a lot of minutes, especially Ayme."
More on Walker:
"I don't know [how long he will be out for]. For tomorrow not available, the rest [of the games] we see how is ankle reacts."
Pep on Brighton:
"They don't need to win at Arsenal and Spurs [to know they are good]. I have a lot of admiration for them, how they play, and their results. Graham Potter side. A good test for us."
Pep on Real Madrid:
"I saw the game against Sevilla, but I don't have time! If we have a week off I have time. But now it's Brighton. I'm not going to answer about Madrid only about Brighton."
Pep on Nathan Ake:
"He's so reliable, especially when you behave in your life like him he always will do good. In the bad phases always helping, an exceptional person. As a football player, when these people when they don't get the minutes he deserves and then get the minutes, he's thinking about the other ones and has done well. His mother and father in heaven [passed away recently] must be so proud. He's aware of the behaviours and feelings and his life is better."
Pep on title race excitement:
"The challenge is the same as the last two weeks, the same, one point ahead. Every game is a final, challenge and fight until the end."
Pep on off-field factors when signing players:
"The scouting takes a look at these behaviours. Football isn't just [about the on-pitch] skills."
Pep on Liam Delap being an option:
"He's training with us. The young players have to make a step to help us. He was 5-6 months injured, start last month playing regularly for the second team. It's important because he feels much better [following the early season injuries]."
Written by: @NA1907_
Certain quotes as quoted by Manchester Evening News.
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