Exclusive interview with Pep Guardiola: Why Man City’s success depends on letting go of disgruntled players, no matter how talented they are


Pep Guardiola, the manager of Manchester City, explains why disgruntled players must leave. It’s among the keys to his accomplishments. On Saturday, watch Man City vs. Chelsea live on Sky Sports Premier League. Kickoff is at 5:30 p.m.

On Saturday, when Chelsea comes to the Etihad Stadium, Pep Guardiola will face not one, but two former Manchester City players. Raheem Sterling is deserving of the title of club legend. It was believed by many that Cole Palmer would also become one.

The youthful attacker has chosen a different route and is currently Chelsea’s top player. With just 489 Premier League minutes to his credit, there were glimpses of his potential while wearing a City shirt. It’s opportunities that have made him grow. He comes back a superstar.

The knowledge that this was inevitable tempers any remorse Guardiola may feel. Palmer has performed really well. However, City has also done so. They have won 11 straight games, and during that run, they have won the global championship for the first time.

Palmer had to go because, in Guardiola’s opinion, he wanted to go.

“How can you get the best from a player if he is not happy?”

It is one of his management tenets.

He tells Sky Sports, “It does not work if he is here for a contract.” “To want to play and be delighted to be here, people must come here with passion and love. I use that in reference to myself. I won’t be here if I’m not happy. A contract has no bearing on this.

“I believe that the players are content here because they receive the best treatment from the club. However, the players are only here to have fun and play minutes. Additionally, they typically want to play when they are not. I fully comprehend. And they need to go out.”

Now, city supporters are starting to get used to it. Prior to the start of the previous season, Sterling and Gabriel Jesus departed. Midway through what would turn out to be an incredible treble-winning campaign, Joao Cancelo left. Despite this, the machine continues to operate.

Maybe even in light of it?

Guardiola does things his way, and it suits him. “The other player is not happy when this one plays. It never changes.” At minimum, it seemed as though City had benefited from everything that Sterling, Jesus, Cancelo, and other others had to contribute. Surely, Palmer’s departure is frustrating?

“Yes, of course,” he answers.

“But at the end of the day, the other players are good too.”

The paradox lies in Guardiola’s desire for a small group but also for competition for spots. Although he understands that if a player has a problem with being cut from the club, that can also lead to issues, he wants players that won’t settle for being second best.

“Handling it is not simple. He clarifies, “Listen, you have to be of special quality to be in this club and in this first team.”

“Raheem was crucial to our success because of his ability, and the things we accomplished together were made possible by him. I’m fairly certain Cole did not receive the minutes he was due, but that’s life. He already has stardom, that much is true. He is an amazing athlete.”

If he had stayed, he may have likely started Saturday’s match against Chelsea. Preparations for this game have been hindered by injuries sustained by Bernardo Silva and Jack Grealish in Copenhagen. Guardiola has good cause to be confident, even though he is not quite at ease about it.

“Kevin was gone from us for five months. Two months without Erling. Of course, he’s talking about Haaland and De Bruyne. Manchester City was unaffected by it. “Everyone should be fit. But we have to understand that individuals will be hurt with this timetable and rhythm.”

Oscar Bobb might have the opportunity to give another wide turn instead. As the young player coming up from the academy, he has assumed Palmer’s position within the City team. This winning run was maintained at Newcastle thanks to Bobb’s outstanding victory.

Guardiola acknowledges, “I am a little bit sad at myself.”

“He didn’t play a minute in the final two or three games, but his prior participation was outstanding. Although I should have given him more minutes, it is what it is. We need him because the season is so long and we now have injuries.

“We are really pleased with him.”

Bobb’s assimilation into the team guarantees that the balance of inexperience and expertise will persist. Does Guardiola give that any thought? “I would say the sporting director has to think about it more than me,” he says with a giggle. “But certainly, sure. Maintaining equilibrium is crucial.

What keeps City sharp is the squad trimming and constant upheaval. Favorites to win the top division four times in a row and become the first English team to do it. Favorites to win the European Cup again and become the first side from England to do so since the Champions League began.

To help them get new life, the team may make a tactical adjustment or assign a player to a different position. A fresh challenge is presented to keep players alert. Phil Foden has seized the chance to play a bigger part. Manuel Akanji had to get used to playing in the midfield.

“We do it sometimes,” Guardiola admits.

Furthermore, no one is exempt from his criticism.

Guardiola was not pleased with what he observed in a disappointing first half against Everton during which his team was unable to find the breakthrough. Subsequently, he emphasized the unprofessional demeanor of striker Haaland – the player who eventually scored both goals for City.

Sometimes even the greatest need to be reminded of the expectations.

He clarifies, “It is the same in every job in the world.” You cannot operate well at work if you arrive miserable and irritable. You cannot accomplish your task. The expression on the body must be, “Okay, let’s go.” We’re eager to get started. plus a grin. This concludes it.”

He saw that when the ball did not find its way inside the penalty area, Haaland was starting to lose hope. His remarks conveyed to his goal machine that it was improper for the opponent to respond in that way. “It happens sometimes,” he continues.

“You anticipate something, but it never materializes. Recognize that life is not always simple. Everything has complexity. There is always something the opposition contributes. If you don’t believe that your opponents are there to be defeated, you won’t get better.”

Just one more tiny window into his mind is revealed by the way he consistently reinforces his messages and demands more of his players. He predicts a close race for the crown. “Always. Not limited to this particular season.” And he’s not going to stop. It appears that City is on yet another winning streak.

“Just because we have done something numerous times in the past does not guarantee that we will do it again. However, it also provides us with the means to know what has to be done. Concentrate and focus on the subsequent one. That is how we have always done it. It also functions.”


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