Ruben Dias sidelined with hamstring injury – Pep Guardiola pre Manchester United Press Conference
Pep Guardiola faced the media ahead of this Sunday's Manchester derby at the Etihad, with the Catalan's side looking to complete the double over United and keep the pace at the top of the Premier League. The boss discussed the situation in Ukraine, Ralf Rangnick, a worrying injury update on Ruben Dias, and much more.
Pep on Oleks Zinchenko/situation in Ukraine:
"It's concerning, as long as the war continues it gets worse and worse. He's involved incredibly in his country doing projects. He knows better than anyone else, he has family there. It's getting worse, this situation is 8, 9 days. Unfortunately, it will be longer."
Pep on the Premier League's gestures:
"It's important but at the end is just a gesture. All around the world personally and collective do something. The politicians can avoid these things. It happens because they are complete failures. It happens because they are not able to do it. It happens where innocent people are suffering. It still happens. Nato and European nations are failures."
Pep on United manager, Ralf Rangnick:
"The idea from Ralf Rangnick is the tendency already in the Premier League. Ralf Rangnick is the father of gegenpress and we see that with Liverpool, Southampton, a little bit Chelsea with Thomas Tuchel. Top clubs, five or six teams are playing this way. Important ones like Liverpool, United, Chelsea, Southampton, Leeds [with Jesse Marsch]. The work Ralf Rangnick has done in Germany is exceptional. Then Austria, Red Bull (Salzburg) - teams play the same philosophy and you can already see some patterns of what he wants to do."
Pep on the difference between City and United over the decade:
"We need one hour for what we have done at Man City - United, I don't know I am not there, it is not my business. City follow a pattern, we play this way, we try to buy certain players. Every manager has his own way. Our success is not just with me. From Abu Dhabi, Ferran, Txiki. Step by step, we try to win games."
Pep on United:
"All the time United has been there. It doesn’t matter if they're fighting for titles. When we played United in UCL with Sir Alex, we always had respect for their history and quality of players. It doesn't matter - always I have a lot of respect for the players they have."
Pep on injuries/team news:
"Nathan [Ake] and Ruben [Dias] are not ready [for the derby]."
More on Dias:
"Muscular. Hamstring. Four to six weeks. It happens. In other seasons our best players have been out for months [Kevin De Bruyne given as an example]. I'd love him but he's not there, I will not cry. It is what it is. We have decent players available. We have 14-15 players. With these players, we are going to fight and try to play good. Impossible to fight if you don't play good. We play with our people and hopefully, our people support as they always do."
Pep on preparing for the best United:
"Absolutely. I see the weak points and the strengths [of United] - but if I see it as an easy game, I won't sleep well. I have to see the best of them and think wow. Always I think of the best version of them otherwise we will do a mistake. We saw how strong they are, every time they had a chance to score. Everyone has to be prepared, defenders have to face the wingers, have to be ready. They didn't win many games but they scored most of the time away, they can run more than normal or more against us. It will be difficult. They can play, if you make a mistake they are clinical."
Pep on the importance of fans:
"It's special, of course. Derbies in Spain and Germany and here of course is special. The people will be there if we give them. We have to give them first. After that they will be there."
Pep on the derby:
"When we win 12, 14 games in a row it’s a new game and I don't see what happened in the past. We finished as champions three times in four years, this is what counts. For fans, it's a special game of the history. I understand it. I don't come here to win against United. I will be satisfied to fight and win the Premier League."
Pep on Phil Foden and Jack Grealish watching Lionel Messi videos:
"My advice is to continue to watch Messi. He is not bad. They have my permission."
Pep on Cristiano Ronaldo:
"One of the greatest in the last 15 years alongside Messi. We aren't going to see it again. When you achieve these things you're under scrutiny every day. Today especially with social media. He was too good and as a finisher exceptional top player. It was a joy to watch in these years. We have to explode our game and strength to avoid him close to the ball. The game we played there, we were under control, first time he arrive Ederson made an incredible save. This is the quality he has. We have to control him. One of the greatest, goalscoring machine, always he is so strong mentally. He handles this pressure without a problem, lives with expectation throughout his career in a positive way."
Written by: @NA1907_
Quotes as quoted by Manchester Evening News and Manchester City.
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