I can’t change City’s way of playing football: Guardiola

Manchester, July 9 (IANS) Manchester City’s new chief coach Pep Guardiola on Saturday said he cannot be a Messiah and change how the club has played its football over the years.

Guardiola was hugely successful in Barcelona with the ‘tiki-taka’. But in England most clubs love to play direct football.

“I come to the country which creates football and to believe you have to change something would be a little bit presumptuous,” Guardiola was quoted as saying by the Independent.

“I’m not good enough to change everything. To change the mentality of a club (after more than) 120 years would be presumptuous. I trust a lot in myself. I think I am able to do the job. But I don’t come here to think I can change the mentality or the culture of England.”

The Spaniard said he would try and help forward Raheem Sterling but added that to get back into form the player has to trust his own abilities.

“Sterling has the quality,” he said. “He just has to focus on his life, his profession and I’m pretty sure he will play good. The players want to talk, talk, talk but the only way you can talk at the end is if you win. What do you want? We can talk here, in the office, anywhere.. but at the end it depends what happen on the green (turf.)”

Goalkeeper Joe Hart had a poor run for England in the ongoing Euro, but Guardiola insisted he remains the main No.1 for City.

“At the moment, there’s no doubt about (it). He’s No. 1,” he said.

Elaborating on it further he said, “We’re always looking for the best option to create a better team. But in that moment I’m not concerned about that. I don’t worry about that — the performance of Joe Hart in the Euros. It’s important to know what is their quality — to analyse their quality and to decide what we are going to do with him. It’s similar with Sterling.”

The former Barcelona coach said the Catalan giants have been a successful unit because of Lionel Messi and the bonding between players who grew up together.

“I was in Barcelona where I had absolutely everything: the best player ever (Messi) and one team where most of the players grew up from the academy (Bayern) so I knew them,” he said.

Guardiola added he needs to deliver from the word go, and does not have time to settle in at the club.

“People don’t expect to see in January and February how good we are,” he said. “They expect first friendly game against Bayern Munich (this month) how good Pep is. I need time. I know I don’t have time.”

–IANS

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