Men's Team

Guardiola: City's ground staff were the men of the match!

THE BOSS: Pep watches on!
Pep Guardiola hailed the Etihad ground staff as his men of the match after City’s crucial 2-1 win over West Ham at a snowbound Etihad Stadium.

The City ground – along with the rest of the country – was blanketed by a wintry blast of snow showers along with icy temperatures, with the pitch covered in snow both prior to kick-off and again at half time.

However, head groundsman Lee Jackson and his team worked overtime clearing the pitch before the game got underway and once again at the break with the start of the second half briefly delayed to allow them to clear the surface.

And after seeing City record our fifth straight win in November thanks to goals from Ilkay Gundogan and substitute Fernandinho, Guardiola was quick to praise the tireless work of one of the Club’s key off field teams.

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Asked whether he was worried the conditions might force the game, the boss was effusive in his admiration for the work of the City ground staff.

“No. The groundskeepers, the guys who take care of the pitch, were the men of the match today,” Guardiola declared.

“They did an incredible job for us to be able to play the game today.

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“We came from a tough game in midweek against PSG and we know exactly which team we face today.

“The amount of chances we created in the first half, in the conditions that we played, [it’s] a huge victory for us, for the effort for the players, for the performance in general.

“We didn’t concede much, we controlled the counter attack. Maybe we could have found another rhythm but the weather didn't allow us to do it.

“A good performance from all of us.”

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With City in a formidable run of form and results, the boss was also asked if he felt the players were hitting the same groove that saw us go on to record a series of notable Club and English records this time last season.

However, Guardiola insisted his focus was solely trained on the next challenge – namely Wednesday’s tough trip to tackle Aston Villa.

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"I don't know what is going to happen. I have said what happens in the past has happened," the manager added.

"We go to Birmingham on Wednesday to play. The rest is fantasy.

"Thoughts in your mind can create big problems in the team.

"The next game is the only one."

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