The City manager underwent back surgery in Barcelona earlier this week with the Club confirming Pep would recuperate in the Catalan city before returning after September’s upcoming international break.
In Pep’s absence assistant coach Juanma Lillo will oversee preparations in person, though Lillo confirmed at Friday’s pre-match press conference that Guardiola would still play a major part via remote communication in conducting planning for the trip to Bramall Lane.
And for his part Bernardo – who signed a new one-year contract extension with City earlier this week – says such is the understanding and cohesion within the City squad and coaching staff, the players will be able to adapt to Pep’s short-term absence.
“Little impact, in the sense that whilst it would be good to have our coach alongside us, if we were to be without him for two or three months, then it might have a different type of impact,” Bernardo pointed out.
“But for two matches before the international break, some players have been playing under him for seven years, others a bit less.
“But we know perfectly well what he wants from us, and what the rest of the staff want from us.
“So we’ll work in the same way to prepare for these games.
“Of course, they’ll be in communication with each other, and we’ll do our best to play in the same way and to win these games before our manager returns.”
Following the Blades clash, ahead of the visit of Fulham, Champions League holders City will find out what group we will be in for the 2023/24 campaign with the draw taking place in Switzerland next Thursday.
Bernardo played an instrumental role in our historic 1-0 win over Inter in June, a victory that also secured the Treble of European Cup, Premier League and FA Cup.
And for the Portuguese international, who is now in his seventh season at City, the chance to share in such an unforgettable experience in Istanbul alongside compatriot Ruben Dias made it all the sweeter and extra satisfying.
“We’ve been on a long journey since Rúben joined. This is Rúben’s fourth season if I’m not mistaken,” Bernardo added.
“We lost a final, we reached the semi-finals against Real Madrid, which we lost in a way that was very hard to take, and in the third year we finally won it.
“We were always very, very close, so to finally be able to lift this final trophy that has been the Club’s objective as well as an individual objective, was a very different feeling.
“This is a team that won five of the last six Premier Leagues, but we were lacking the last step which we were finally able to make.
“To share that moment with Rúben, who is a great friend, was without doubt special.”