Men's Team

Guardiola: This squad has something special

Pep Guardiola believes he is in charge of a ‘special’ group of players.

City are on a phenomenal run of form: unbeaten in 28 matches, having won the last 21 in a row, a sequence of results that has seen us move 14 points clear at the top of the Premier League table and make progress in all three cup competitions.

Guardiola has been widely praised for his tactics and handling of the squad – but he says the desire to keep winning comes from within the players and not from his instructions.

“It comes from themselves, the desire to win and win again,” he said. “No words inject desire into the players. It comes from wanting to compete with his mates and do the best we can.

“People are saying nice things because we are winning. The smell when you win is beautiful but we can lose. That's why our perspective is calm.

“We train incredibly well tomorrow the same and then we want to do a good game.

“I had incredibly hungry teams in my career. We were lucky to be together.

“To do what we have done - winning and winning - is because these guys have something special, like we had in Barcelona and Bayern Munich.”

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1 Arsenal Arsenal Arsenal 20 16 2 2 45 17 28 50 WDWWL
2 Manchester City Manchester City Man City 21 14 3 4 53 21 32 45 WLWWL
3 Manchester United FC Manchester United Man United 22 13 4 5 36 28 8 43 WWDLW
Last updated: 8 February 2023

City’s next assignment is a hugely significant one, with second-placed Manchester United the visitors on Sunday.

It gives us the opportunity to move 17 points clear of our cross-city rivals with 10 games left to play.

But United are on their own incredible run, having not lost away from home for 21 matches, and have enjoyed success in recent matches at the Etihad, winning four and drawing one of the last six.

Guardiola says he is under no illusions about the threat United pose.

“They are so strong in all departments,” he said.

“Defensively, in midfield they have a quality playmaker in Bruno Fernandes and the players upfront, so much pace.

"They have experience in [Edinson] Cavani, a player I admire. How he lives his career.

“It’s Manchester United.

“All the time, United are top class. It’s a privilege for us to have been in front of them for the last seasons.

“My target is to do what we have done lately and be ourselves.”

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