Sport

Pep Guardiola responds to Jack Grealish admission over Man City tactics

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola was asked about the difficulty of adapting to his team

Pep Guardiola insists it is simple to adapt at Manchester City.

Jack Grealish admitted after the Chelsea league game last week that he had found it more difficult than he had thought to change from a relatively free role that he had at Aston Villa to a different system at the Etihad. Kalvin Phillips has had to wait six months for a competitive start since moving from Leeds, with the England international set to start in the League Cup game at Southampton.

Grealish is not alone in struggling to shine in his first year under Guardiola, with many signings including Bernardo Silva and Riyad Mahrez having quiet debut seasons with the Premier League champions. But while the manager accepts that his football can be very different from that of others, he still believes that it is simple to understand – as Grealish and others have learnt.

 

“For me it’s not hard, the way we play is so simple: everyone run without the ball to help each other and be in positions to get the ball in better conditions,” he said. “I would say I understand Jack because Aston Villa said ‘do whatever you want’.

“Here is completely different, you stay in position and the ball comes where you want. We spoke a few times with Jack about positions and football tactics and he understand completely, he is so comfortable with that but it is not difficult.”

David de Gea explains why Erik ten Hag was angry after Manchester United won

Man Utd beat Bournemouth 3-0 at Old Trafford to move level with Newcastle in third but Ten Hag was not totally satisfied.

De Gea and Ten Hag walk off the Old Trafford pitch

David de Gea admitted Erik ten Hag was “a bit angry” with Manchester United’s looseness during their 3-0 win over Bournemouth.

De Gea made four saves to secure an eighth Premier League clean sheet of the season but Ten Hag was unhappy with United’s complacency after Luke Shaw put them 2-0 up in the 49th minute.

The United manager thanked De Gea at full-time and expressed his frustration with some of United’s porous periods.

 

“He was happy with the clean sheet but at the same time he was a bit angry,” De Gea told the MEN. “Because we conceded too many chances and we were too open at the end of the game, so he was a bit angry.

“He (Ten Hag)’s doing well. I say before, he puts every player in the same direction and we feel like a proper team. Everyone wants to win, everyone wants to play for this club and that’s massive.

“He brought a great spirit to the team, we are playing really well and this is the way we have to show and keep the momentum as well.”

The harmony in the United squad was apparent prior to kick-off when the players and crowd applauded returning World Cup winner Lisandro Martinez, who was paraded on the pitch.

De Gea has played behind four different centre-backs in United’s last two wins and Martinez had started every Premier League game before the World Cup.

“It was a massive congratulations to him, he won the World Cup, so it’s great we have everyone back,” De Gea added. “Everyone is ready to play.

“He is a very energetic guy, he’s always smiling, he’s always training 100%, always giving everything, so it’s good to have him back.

“It’s great (the options in defence). I think it doesn’t matter who you put together in the team, even Luke Shaw played at centre-back and he played really well in two difficult games.

“I love to see the players like this, it’s very enjoyable.”

 

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