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Pep Guardiola has denied his Manchester City side have been found out in recent weeks, despite going six matches without a win.
There have been suggestions that a blueprint of how to beat City has emerged, with a high press and aggressive style thought to knock them off their stride – but Guardiola feels his tactics are nuanced enough to deal with teams who play that way.
Ahead of Saturday’s game with West Brom, the Catalan manager insists he has faced this kind of problem before during his time in charge of Barcelona and Bayern Munich – and he firmly believes that creating an intricate build-up, rather than going for the long ball, is the best approach for the players in his squad.
“It has always happened in my career [teams pressing high],” he said. “So in seven years when you play with a build-up, the opponents will want to play high pressing.
“I know what we have to in that kind of cases. Sometimes you need time to make it better. I don’t think that is the reason why we don’t win the recent games.
"For example, the goal against United was long ball, long ball, long ball, long ball, lose the ball in the duels and they score.
"The Tony Pulis team, they make a high pressing and are so aggressive with [Salomon] Rondon, with [Darren] Fletcher and so on, then you have to use that.
“But it's a pass. It is not to [put] the ball long because I am a big fan to the build-up.
"That's why I came here, I repeat many, many times. I have to adapt but I think we can do that. We can do that."