Pep Guardiola insists pre-season clashes are "very important" ahead of Manchester derby

Pep Guardiola insists pre-season clashes are "very important" ahead of Manchester derby

Pep Guardiola has stated Manchester City's pre-season clashes are "very important" to get things in place for the new season.

Danial_Kennedy
Danial Kennedy

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has stated that the club's pre-season will be "very important" as it will give his side time to "adjust" and "try new things", as The Citizens prepare for their opening pre-season clash with bitter rivals Manchester United in Houston. 

Gives us a chance to try new things 

Many City fans were left mildly disappointed at Guardiola's first season at the Etihad Stadium after his arrival from Bayern Munich, with the 2016/17 season be the first in his managerial career that he has failed to pick up any silverware. 

Guardiola has already been rectifying that with many changes made to the squad both going in and out of Eastlands. The Catalan coach has already had his side for a week training at the Etihad Campus before flying across the Atlantic to get some minutes under their belt. 

City will certainly be getting some tough opposition to begin their season preparations playing the likes of Real Madrid and Tottenham in the International Champions Cup as well as taking on United. The two Manchester clubs will play their first overseas derby on early Friday morning (UK time) and Guardiola stated the importance of hitting the ground running this early on. 

“These games are very important - I’ve never been to Houston before," Guardiola told his press conference. "But at end of the day it’s a derby and people want to see how we can play, try new things, and adjust.”

 

He is our player and will remain here 

Guardiola has proven ruthless thus far in the summer window with a number of long-standing players making their way to the exit door. It doesn't appear to be letting up anytime soon either with the likes of Joe Hart leaving on loan and it is heavily rumoured that striker Sergio Agüero could be making a move. 

The Argentine had yet another excellent season last year managing to notch 33 goals in all competitions, his highest total since arriving from Atlético Madrid back in 2011. Despite that he was still dropped by Guardiola to make room for Gabriel Jesus, only to be brought back into the fold after the Brazilian's injury. 

This exclusion did leave to rumours of a possible exit from the club when the summer transfer window rolled around with Chelsea apparently interested, but Guardiola shot down any rumours of an exit stating that the Argentine will be at the club next season. 

"You know my opinion about Sergio," he said. "I said many times last season and I haven't changed any words about what I have said."

Guardiola concluded: "He is our player and he will remain here."

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