Men's Team

Guardiola hails City's 'amazing relationship'

Guardiola hails City's 'amazing relationship'
Pep Guardiola hailed City’s consistency and team ethic, following the 4-0 triumph over Bournemouth.

Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling and the Blues completed 2017 with an unbeaten home record and having bagged more than 100 goals.

Reflecting on another superb and dominant victory, the Catalan boss declared he was most impressed with his side’s ability to continuously deliver results, particularly during a gruelling period of fixtures.

“Always, you have doubts after a lot of games in a row and if you are mentally ready to do it again and again,” Guardiola stated.

“That has impressed me most about the guys – that they were ready.

“It was similar to the Southampton and Huddersfield games, and also West Ham in that Bournemouth defended with 5-4-1 with their striker Callum Wilson with Fernandinho.

“We had hardly any space – there was no space between the lines.

“We made a good first goal and the second helped us a lot. We changed the system to 4-4-2 and found tempo and space. We scored four beautiful goals.

REPORT: City 4-0 Bournemouth

“I am so happy. Merry Christmas to everybody! Now, we are thinking about Newcastle.”

Aguero achieved another personal milestone with his 100th goal at the Etihad Stadium.

Having netted a brace against the Cherries and created an assist, the Argentine produced a Man of the Match display and Guardiola was pleased his players – aware of their squad competition - are taking their chances to shine.

“I was a football player,” he continued. “I understand the players in that when they are substituted and don’t play, they are sad and upset.

“I understand our job is to try and search to find a weakness but I try to have the best relationship with my players as possible.

“Sometimes, I think Gabriel Jesus deserves to play – and Bernardo Silva and Eliaquim Mangala.

“The important thing is that they have respect between each other.

“If they are not happy with me, that is not a problem but they have an amazing relationship between them.

“The locker room is a dream and to play with them and train with them.

“I have a lot of respect for Sergio Aguero and all he has done, what he does and what he will do in the future.

“He will decide everything about his future and his life. I am so happy to have him here with Gabriel Jesus and the squad.”

Guardiola also reserved praise for Sterling’s improvement, highlighting his decision-making key to his success.

“With and without the ball, he is so aggressive and so intense,” he declared.

“I like the most how clear he is becoming like a football player. He knows when he has to dribble and when he has to pass.

“Before, he was only dribbling and that was a mistake.

“He is enjoying scoring goals. Before, I think he was a bit scared.

“He is a young player and important player for the national team. The most difficult thing with footballers at that age is to maintain that level of sevens and eights.”