Don't know what we can do: Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on PSG's squad ahead of Champions League tie

While City won on aggregate in last season's meetings, Pep has warned that those results will have little bearing on the upcoming matches.

Pep Guardiola in a file photo; Credit: Manchester City Twitter page
By Nilavro Ghosh | Sep 27, 2021 | 3 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

As domestic competitions are set aside this week, matches continue to come fast and hard in the football calendar. The UEFA Champions League, and more specifically Paris Saint-Germain vs Manchester City, is the only thing on everyone’s mind. Pep Guardiola, City’s manager, took to the press ahead of the match to answer some intriguing questions. While Guardiola’s men won 4-1 on aggregate in last season’s meetings to reach their first European Final, the City manager has warned that those results will have little bearing on the upcoming Group A fixtures against the French side, especially given their summer recruitment. He was asked to comment on Lionel Messi’s departure from Barcelona this season as the legendary player’s former manager.


“It was a surprise for everyone. Everyone now accepts it. Long time ago, you couldn’t imagine it, but it happened. Life itself, you never know what happens. What is important is he’ll be happy there in Paris,” the Spanish manager said. At Barcelona, the pair formed an unbreakable bond and won a slew of trophies together. Guardiola has never stopped being amazed by the player and has waxed lyrical about him.

“This type of player speaks for himself on the pitch. I don’t have to add anything. We’re fortunate to see him for 15 years. I don’t have to talk about him or describe him. I hope he plays tomorrow for the benefit of the game,” Guardiola added.

On the prospect of stopping the formidable PSG attack, which includes Messi, Guardiola admitted that he did not know what his side could do to stop it. “What happened last season was last season. They were a fantastic team and it was a tight game and now they have Messi,” he said, speaking in his pre-match press conference. “With this quality, I don’t know what we can do, honestly! They are a fantastic team. What could I say with the players they have: Marquinhos, I’m a big fan of him. Hakimi, Paredes, Verratti, especially, and the players upfront – they can play wide, narrow, middle. They combine really well and have quality,” the former Barcelona manager said.


“Talent cannot be stopped. We don’t put pressure on one player to stop the talent they have – we do it as a team. We know we will suffer – this level demands this. They are so good and you have to be able to suffer for 90 minutes,” the Manchester City manager continued. “To control is so difficult. We will try to defend well when we don’t have the ball and let them run when we have it.  They are exceptional players – everyone knows it. All of them are so good. They can combine and connect. We are looking forward to the game and we will play,” the Spaniard added.

Manchester City are yet to win the UEFA Champions League and they came closest the previous year as they lost in the final against fellow English club Chelsea. Undoubtedly, winning the Champions League with City will be one of the top goals for Guardiola, having won almost everything else with the club so far. However, it will certainly not be a simple task.

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