Men's Team

Guardiola: Brighton boss De Zerbi will have 'a massive impact'

Pep Guardiola says he is looking forward to locking horns with Brighton counterpart Roberto De Zerbi on Saturday and believes the recently appointed Seagulls boss will go on to have a ‘a massive impact’.

The Italian succeeded Graham Potter as manager at the AMEX Stadium last month after successful spells in charge at Benevento and Sassuolo, amongst other clubs, in his native country and more latterly Shakhtar Donetsk of Ukraine.

So far, De Zerbi has overseen two draws and two defeats during his time in charge on the South coast.

However, ahead of Saturday’s Etihad meeting with Brighton, Guardiola revealed how much he admired De Zerbi’s philosophy and approach to the job – and why he believes he will only have a positive impact on English football.


“We have spoken two or three times. We mainly talk about football (and) I am really happy he is here,” Guardiola asserted.

“I just saw the last two games he played here. He is already playing the way he wants to play.

“His impact in England will be massive.

“The way he plays… he was counter-cultural the way he played in Italy.

"The way they played brings a lot of success in the national team. He is playing football in a different way.

“A team like Sassuolo is an incredible example.

“No matter the quality or players you have, if you believe 100% in the way your team wants to play, you can do it.


“It doesn’t matter the way you start. It matters the way you believe. In every place he has been.”

More specifically, Guardiola also said that he believed the 43-year-old had inherited a hugely talented Brighton squad and one that will provide City with a tough test at the Etihad on Saturday.

“At Brighton, he took over a team with Graham Potter making an incredible job there,” the City boss added.

“They are so dynamic as a team. They have incredible players with MacAlister, March, Gross.

“All of them have incredible quality and are incredible in small spaces.”