Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola He joked that he could throw caution to the wind to finish Leipzig in the Champions League by branding the “nine-man squad”.
City were held 1-1 by Germany on Wednesday in the first leg of their last 16 tie and Riyad Mahrez’s opener was canceled out by a header from Josko Gvardiol.
“I didn’t want to come here and lose 4-3. It should be more open in Manchester,” said Guardiola who coached Bayern Munich to Bundesliga titles every year in Germany and said the City “can not compete. “with the speed of the German troops.
“We don’t have a team that can compete with them in a lot of changes, they are better and they are faster than us, except for Kyle (Walker) and Erling (Haaland).
“The speed they have, we don’t have.”
Guardiola added: “Maybe in the second leg I will be crazy and decide to play with nine players. But I coached in this country and I evaluated Leipzig and I needed this kind of management.”
The City Manager gathered his team on the pitch for an impromptu pep rally after the final whistle in a bid to their souls are broken.
“They put their heads down, I said to them ‘Why are your heads down, put your heads up,'” said the Spanish manager in a press conference after the game.
“The game you played was a very good game. If people don’t like it, it doesn’t matter. You played the game the way it should be played.”
The City manager said the Champions League “used to be easy”, but now it is “a tough competition”.
“Every team in every league is very strong.”
Leipzig manager Marco Rose revealed how his half-time speech, which “started quietly and ended up a bit loud”, pushed his players to stop “playing the game of the City.”
“I told them ‘what are you doing, coming into a game like this and standing deep – that’s not the plan.’
Rose said he was confident ahead of the second leg in Manchester on March 14, but admitted “to go to City, it’s better to have a 3-0 advantage to get a good feeling.” .”
“We can take a lot from the game so we can’t play again in the first half like we did today.”
Gvardiol ‘will remain a Leipzig player’
The manager of RB Leipzig, Marco Rose, said that Josko Gvardiol is wanted, “he is our player and we will remain”.
Gvardiol came on in the second half for Leipzig and also stopped city star Erling Haaland in a disappointing evening for the Norwegian.
In his second season at Leipzig since moving from Dynamo Zagreb, Gvardiol’s form for Leipzig, as well as his World Cup performances for Croatia, has reportedly made him the target of many European club.
Gvardiol was recently quoted in the German media as saying “Maybe I’ll go out the door after Christopher (Nkunku)” according to the Frenchman’s report with Chelsea.
However, Rose dismissed speculation the defender could be heading to the Premier League, saying “the headlines don’t seem to bother him”.
“He is an RB Leipzig player, I think he will remain a player for RB Leipzig.
“In the story, he said about Christopher, but he laughed – of course, in the newspaper, you don’t know the laugh.
“He said he likes it here and feels comfortable here. As a coach you want to work with great players.”
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