Praise and promise from the Burnley camp this morning, Robbie Savage shares his opinion on Riyad Mahrez and a former Blue says City are playing ‘beautiful football’.
With kick-off against the Clarets just a few hours away, let’s begin with the Burnley Express who carry the comments of Ashley Barnes ahead of the match.
Barnes, who scored against City at the Etihad in January said: “They’ve been amazing, they’re an amazing team. What they’re doing is fantastic and it will be another tough opponent to come up against but it’s nothing we haven’t faced before.
"Whatever the gaffer's game plan we have to take that on board, but as soon you cross that white line it's a tough game.
"They have fantastic individual players who can create something out of nothing, we have to be alive and switched on for 90 minutes. You can’t carry anyone, everyone has to be on top of their game to hopefully get something."
The Lancashire Telegraph also previews the game but focus on the pre-match words of boss Sean Dyche who has responded to the tackling debate that has surrounded the Blues in recent weeks.
They report: “Guardiola has been angry at tackles from Cardiff City's Joe Bennett and West Brom's Matt Phillips on Leroy Sane and Brahim Diaz this week, but Dyche won't be telling his players to tread carefully.
‘I think just play the game, the idea is to play the game properly and appropriately,’ he said. "Some of the challenges are down to the skill level of the player and how fast they are, how quick their mind works.
‘I think tackling is still part of the game, and it’s a very difficult skill. Much more difficult than people make it out to be.
‘There’s less malice in the game compared to when I was playing. There is way less physical contact. So that’s something that has changed, not for better or worse, but it’s a lot less physical.’
Reflecting on Wednesday evening’s transfer deadline drama, BBC Radio 5 Live pundit Robbie Savage has hit out at his former club Leicester City.
Savage believes the Foxes should have done business with the Blues and the Daily Star report: “Former Leicester midfielder turned pundit Robbie Savage thinks his former club will live to regret not cashing in on the former PFA Player ref the Year.
‘Do they have much to gain from keeping a disaffected player at the club? Not in my opinion, Savage wrote in The Mirror.
‘No disrespect to Leicester, who are perfectly entitled to hold Mahrez to his contract, but he has outgrown them.
‘Are they ever going to offer him Champions League football again? Probably not.
‘He’s seen other star players being allowed to fly the nest for good money – so why are Leicester demanding a king’s ransom for Mahrez?’
Robbie’s never behind the door with an opinion or two!
Finally, former City defender Jerome Boateng has been speaking to Goal.com.
The Germany international is well-placed to pass comment on Pep Guardiola having worked under him for three seasons and he couldn’t have a higher opinion of the Blues’ boss.
Write Goal: “Jerome Boateng has hailed Pep Guardiola as ‘brilliant’ and described Manchester City’s football this season as ‘beautiful’.
“Boateng worked together with the Catalan for three seasons at Bayern Munich, winning three German league titles and two doubles between 2014 and 2016.
“City are 15 points clear in the Premier League and remain on course for a quadruple with a Carabao Cup final against Arsenal looming next month, and the Germany international puts that down to the coach.
‘He’s brilliant,’ the World Cup winner told Goal. ‘For me, tactically, he is the best. This season City bought a lot of good players. They have a lot of money.
‘Now you see more that it’s his team. They play very good football. It’s beautiful to watch.’
Indeed it is!
That’s all for today – we’ll be back with reaction to today’s match tomorrow morning…