Pep Guardiola Refuses To Criticise His Players After Defeat Vs Manchester United

Pep Guardiola Refuses To Criticise His Players After Defeat Vs Manchester United

United, serial winners of the Premier League under former manager Alex Ferguson, will be desperate to throw a spanner in City's works and reclaim a modicum of pride.

City must overturn a 3-0 first-leg deficit when they host Liverpool for the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final on Tuesday after being hit by a three-goal blitz in 19 first-half minutes at Anfield last week.

Much will be made about the events before the game where sections of the Liverpool fan base attacked the City team bus in an embarrassing attempt to intimidate the players, but Pep Guardiola will have to take the blame for this one with his decisions tactically for City.

"We will try to pick ourselves up for Liverpool, we are professionals", he told BBC Radio 5 live .

"If that's so I will have to recognise that I'm not good enough or the way we want to play (means we are) not able to do that - but I don't think so because of what we've done this season".

And they were even more porous as United fought back to turn the game around in a 16-minute spell just after half-time as a Paul Pogba double and Chris Smalling's victor handed United a famous win.

Asked whether events on Merseyside had changed his plans, he replied: "After the result?" We could be better but we could be worse.

"And Guardiola needs to question himself on whether he is conducting the training sessions as he should be".

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"I don't know right now. We're going to try on Tuesday and in the next games".

Liverpool's players certainly believe the atmosphere played a role in the outcome.

The Brazil striker endured a particularly frustrating outing against Liverpool and was critical of his own display afterwards.

Ahead of this weekend's derby, Guardiola said they must be fully concentrated as they edge very close to being crowned this season's league champions.

"Gabriel is 21 years old, it was his birthday before the game at Anfield".

Having endured a disappointing first season with City, Guardiola has silenced the critics who claimed his purist principles would not work in the cut-throat Premier League, meshing his desire for a smooth passing style with an ability to compete physically.

"When Madrid and Barcelona are always in front it is because they have players that when they have a half-chance they score two goals".

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