EPL

Pep Guardiola says Manchester City job ‘everything a manager could dream of’

By Sports Desk January 30, 2024

Pep Guardiola has “everything a manager could dream of” at Manchester City and has been re-energised by their continuing success.

The recent decision of Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp to stand down at the end of the season, citing the need for a break, has brought focus on Guardiola’s own position at the Etihad Stadium.

Yet the famously intense Spaniard, who himself took a year out after quitting Barcelona in 2012 and is contracted only until the end of next season, insists he has no plans to follow Klopp’s exit.

“I have everything that a manager could dream of,” said Guardiola, who took charge at City in 2016.

“The hierarchy support me and always have. It’s a good environment.

“I still feel good and, of course, one day it is going to finish but I don’t think about that right now.”

Guardiola’s successes at City include five Premier League titles and the Champions League.

Their crowning glory came as they won the treble last season but Guardiola’s hunger has shown no signs of abating.

Already this season they have lifted the European Super Cup and the Club World Cup and they maintain hope of retaining all three major pieces of silverware they claimed last term.

Guardiola said: “Winning helps you to have more energy. When you are losing games you are more tired but I see the team getting better and playing difficult opponents like at Goodison Park after the Club World Cup or Newcastle or Spurs away.

“Seeing how the team behaved (showed) me, wow, we are still together, we are on the same path. That gives you energy.

“You do not switch energy on or off. You have to bring energy every day. That is what I am living now.”

In keeping with his previous contract extensions, Guardiola insists there is no urgency to agree fresh terms.

He said: “I think we have time. Now I feel really good, like always I have been, but football changes a lot.

“I have my opinion that when you have a year-and-a-half left on your contract it is a lot of time in world football.

“Many things are involved and extending after two years is not the same as extending after nine, it’s completely different. But still I am sitting here and I am OK.”

Guardiola, 53, says he now feels more relaxed than when he was a younger manager and found it difficult to switch off from the pressures of the job.

He said: “When I started in Barcelona I was like that but now I can stay on the sofa watching TV and don’t think about football.

“That helps me because after I have more desire to reconnect. Before I was thinking all the time because I thought I was missing something or not being professional enough.

“I understand that was a mistake and it’s better to have quality (time) for what you want to do.”

Related items

  • Issues facing Newcastle as they look to balance on-field ambition with PSR rules Issues facing Newcastle as they look to balance on-field ambition with PSR rules

    Newcastle could face a challenging summer as they attempt to managing the competing demands of their ambition and financial rules which prevent them from fully exercising their spending power.

    In-form striker Alexander Isak and influential midfielder Bruno Guimaraes are coveted by rivals at home and abroad and the Magpies, who are determined to hang on to their biggest names, will have to negotiate a balancing act as they go about the latest phase of their recruitment drive.

    Here, the PA news agency takes a look at some of the issues they may have to contend with.

    Aren’t Newcastle’s owners fabulously wealthy?

    The Magpies’ Saudi-backed owners may have eye-watering amounts of money at their disposal, but the Premier League’s profit and sustainability rules – of which Everton and Nottingham Forest have fallen foul – limit the extent to which they can use it. Clubs are not allowed to lose in excess of £105million over rolling three-year periods, meaning Newcastle cannot simply flex their financial muscle.

    Why might they have to sell this summer?

    Head coach Eddie Howe has been allowed to invest around £400million in his squad since taking up the reins in November 2021, but sacrifices have already had to be made – most notably Allan Saint-Maximin’s £25million departure for Al-Ahli last summer – in order to balance the books. Chief executive Darren Eales has admitted player trading is inevitable at some point, and Kieran Trippier and Callum Wilson were linked with January moves to Bayern Munich and AC Milan respectively as potential suitors dipped a toe in the water.

    Who are their biggest assets?

    Isak, who has already been touted as a target for north London duo Arsenal and Tottenham, is the man of the moment having taken his tally for the season to 21 goals with a double against Spurs on Saturday.  The Sweden international, who became Newcastle’s record signing when he joined them from Real Sociedad for £63million in August 2022, has pace, skill and an eye for goal, all of which has endeared him to the Toon Army.

    Midfield general Guimaraes, who has been linked repeatedly with Paris St Germain, enjoys similarly elevated status on Tyneside, where the continued presence of his great friend and Brazil team-mate Joelinton, who signed a new long-term contract last week, could prove a telling factor.

    What has Howe said?

    The Newcastle boss has been unequivocal on the need to retain his best players if the club is to realise its dreams. Asked in particular about Isak’s retention in the aftermath of the Spurs game, he said: “We are trying to build a team, we are trying to grow everything, really, upwards and to do that as quickly as possible and as efficiently as you can, you need to keep your best players, otherwise you enter a different period where you go into transition and you have to start again.”

    What are the alternatives?

    Behind the scenes, the club is working hard to boost commercial revenue with lucrative new kit and shirt sponsorship deals already signed and the benefits of their return to the Champions League stage to be factored in. However in the short term, they may still need to be creative and Paraguay international Miguel Almiron also attracted interest in January.

    Alternatively, selling a home-grown player, reluctant as Howe would be to do so, would yield pure profit in PSR terms, while moving on fringe members of the squad might reduce the wage bill, but otherwise have little financial impact.

  • A look at Arsenal’s highs and lows on the road in Europe, ahead of Munich return A look at Arsenal’s highs and lows on the road in Europe, ahead of Munich return

    Arsenal head to Germany on Wednesday night looking to progress to the Champions League semi-finals by beating Bayern Munich.

    With the quarter-final tie finely poised at 2-2 following the first leg at the Emirates Stadium last week, Mikel Arteta will be hopeful his side can pull off a victory in Bavaria.

    However, Arsenal’s recent past is tarnished by some poor performances on the road in European knockout games, some of which were unexpected and some whose ramifications are still felt on the club to this day.

    Here, the PA news agency looks at the highs and lows Arsenal have been through since the closing years of Arsene Wenger’s reign.

    HIGHSSlavia Prague 0 Arsenal 4: Europa League quarter-final, 2020-21

    After conceding an added-time equaliser in the home leg, Arteta’s Arsenal cruised into the final four with a fine showing at the Sinobo Stadium. Goals from Nicolas Pepe, Alexandre Lacazette and Bukayo Saka had the Gunners cruising at the break before Lacazette wrapped up the emphatic win in the second half.

    Olympiacos 1 Arsenal 3: Europa League round of 16, 2020-21

    Two late goals were enough to give Arsenal a strong lead to take back to north London for the return leg. Martin Odegaard had given the visitors the lead but Youssef El-Arabi levelled before the hour – only for Gabriel Magalhaes and Mohamed Elneny to score in the closing stages.

    Valencia 2 Arsenal 4: Europa League semi-final, 2018-19

    Unai Emery had been appointed as Wenger’s successor and the most successful manager in Europa League history was at it again in his first season in charge. A 3-1 victory in the home leg at the Emirates was built on brilliantly in Spain as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang stole the show with a hat-trick, with Lacazette also among the goals.

    Napoli 0 Arsenal 1: Europa League quarter-final, 2018-19

    Another strong home outing in the first leg had put Arsenal in the driving seat as they went to Italy with a 2-0 aggregate lead. An accomplished display, rounded off by a first-half Lacazette goal, completed a job well done for Emery and his players.

    LOWSPorto 1 Arsenal 0: Champions League round of 16, 2023-24

    After a seven-year wait to return to the knockout stages of Europe’s premier club competition, Arteta’s side stalled. Porto’s approach frustrated and restricted Arsenal in equal measures and Galeno’s stunning stoppage-time strike compounded a night to forget in Portugal.

    Villarreal 2 Arsenal 1: Europa League semi-final, 2020-21

    Emery may have lost his one and only Europa League final as Arsenal boss but he once again proved this was his competition as he led Villarreal to victory over his former side on course to lifting the trophy again. Manu Trigueros and Raul Albiol had the hosts two goals ahead inside half an hour before Dani Ceballos was sent off for Arsenal. Pepe pulled one back from the penalty spot but a 0-0 draw at the Emirates saw Emery triumph.

    Atletico Madrid 1 Arsenal 0: Europa League semi-final, 2017-18

    Wenger’s final chance to win European silverware as Arsenal manager evaporated with defeat in the Spanish capital. Having been held to a 1-1 draw at home despite Atleti playing with 10 men for 80 minutes, Diego Costa’s match-winner in Madrid saw Arsenal eliminated and Wenger’s hopes fade.

    Bayern Munich 5 Arsenal 1: Champions League round of 16, 2016-17

    Three goals in 10 second half minutes proved the undoing of Wenger’s side in Munich, after Alexis Sanchez had cancelled out Arjen Robben’s early effort. Robert Lewandowski and a Thiago Alcantara double took the game beyond the visitors, before Thomas Muller struck late on. Bayern added insult to injury by repeating the scoreline in the second leg at the Emirates.

    Barcelona 3 Arsenal 1: Champions League round of 16, 2015-16

    Having barely scraped out of their group, Arsenal were handed a lesson by Barcelona, losing the home leg of their tie 2-0. They travelled to the Nou Camp in hope rather than expectation but were again found wanting, Elneny’s fine consolation of little consequence as Neymar, Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi struck for the hosts.

  • Everton lodge appeal against two-point deduction Everton lodge appeal against two-point deduction

    Everton have formally lodged an appeal against the two-point penalty imposed on the club earlier this month for breaching Premier League financial rules.

    The Toffees indicated their intention to appeal last Monday, the same day the sanction was announced. The PA news agency understands that appeal has now been lodged.

    The club admitted breaching the Premier League’s profitability and sustainability rules (PSR) for permitted losses by £16.6million for the assessment period ending with the 2022-23 season.

    The independent commission which imposed the sanction disclosed in the written reasons for its decision that the Premier League had initially sought a five-point penalty.

    This was reduced to two by the commission, after mitigation was taken into account, notably the fact that the club were being punished twice in the same overlapping period. In February Everton had a 10-point penalty for an earlier PSR breach reduced to six on appeal.

    Everton will now be aiming to achieve a further reduction to the two-point penalty via the latest appeal.

    Everton and Nottingham Forest have both now appealed against the sanctions imposed on them, and the hope for all concerned will be that both outcomes are known heading into the final round of Premier League matches on May 19.

    The commission which issued the two-point penalty will also hold a separate hearing to settle a dispute between the club and the league around costs which Everton contend are associated to the construction of their new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock.

    This dispute is not covered by the new ‘standard directions’ for dealing with PSR cases before the end of the season in which clubs are charged, so any sanction imposed would almost certainly apply next season.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.