Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has hit back at UEFA boss Aleksander Cerefin, who has accused the blues of showing disrespect to UEFA for apparently failing to attend a meeting regarding the use of VAR on Monday.
The system is due to be used in the Champions League knock-out stages this season, and Cerefin was disappointed that only five managers from the sixteen teams remaining in the competition were in attendance. This prompted the UEFA president to accuse the missing managers, Guardiola among them, of showing disrespect for UEFA.
“For me it’s not just a lack of respect for Roberto Rosetti’s team and UEFA’s organisation,” Cerefin said. “But the influence of coaches is huge and, if they complain about being refereed, they should at least come and see what the experts say about the use of VAR.”
But Guardiola, whose team were busy preparing for the match at Everton on Wednesday, hit back by stating a member of City’s staff was indeed present at the meeting. “I respect what the UEFA president says but I don’t agree with him, I’m sorry. Brian Kidd was there. He travelled, he was there in the meeting and I have on my table the report about VAR.
“The problem was that on Wednesday we had a game and it was more important to be with my players because on Monday and Tuesday we had the training sessions and I could not travel. I would have travelled, I had the tickets, I was there and I was going but the Premier League decided to put the Everton game between Arsenal and Chelsea there. I couldn’t travel, but someone from Man City was there, we were involved in that. So Mr Ceferin, in that case Manchester City were not in that position.”