Sunday 25 February 2018

Pep: Jose to spur me on

Guardiola ready for duel with Mourinho ahead of new task

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola. Photo: Phil Noble
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola. Photo: Phil Noble

Pep Guardiola believes the renewal of his rivalry with Jose Mourinho will bring out the best in him as a manager.

Guardiola, who won six league titles, a pair of Champions Leagues and four domestic cups during his time with Barcelona and Bayern Munich, is settling into his new role with Manchester City.

But he's already looking ahead to his first tussle with the Old Trafford boss in the Premier League. The two had previously locked horns in fiery El Clasico encounters in Spain, when Guardiola was in charge of Barcelona and Mourinho held the reins at Real Madrid, and the former thinks trying to outmanoeuvre the best coaches in the world has brought the best out of him.

"I think Jose said it pretty well that it is not about him or me," Guardiola said in his first press briefing as City coach.

"What I saw from the distance is it is so tough to win the games here. We played many times against each other. I can say, they help me, the big coaches, and Jose is one of them, they help me to reach another level.

"My experience against him, against (Liverpool boss) Jurgen Klopp at Dortmund, a lot of coaches in Germany and Spain they made me better. All the managers in the world want to win and we are going to try and win as well," added the new City boss, keen for the task ahead.

"The challenge is coming to a new country and trying to prove yourself. I know how difficult it is in England to find a team to win four, five, six games in a row. It is not easy."

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