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Nigel De Jong: “Pep took City to a different level, the way he has them playing.”

Great words of praise from the former City man.

Manchester City v Chelsea - FA Community Shield Photo by Harry Engels - The FA/The FA via Getty Images

Former Manchester City player Nigel De Jong has been heaping words of praise on the current City manager Pep Guardiola. In a recent interview he hailed the Catalan’s ability's to transform the team and compared it to his time at City.

Let’s dive in-

“Pep took City to a different level, the way he has them playing. I think that’s the big difference from back in the day,” he declared.

“If you look at the technical abilities that he has, opportunities with a new training ground and the players coming in, better players now to bring in as well.

“The food, the diet, the way they live outside of football, the media that comes in and out, he’s bringing City to the stage of really competing internationally with the big teams.

“We couldn’t compete back then with the Barcelona’s and the Real Madrid’s. We were a little too far off but on the right way.

“But he really took them to that next stage of international recognition. That’s what I think he’s doing with City.”

“If you start from the back, Vinny (Vincent Kompany) was massive for us, colossal, but I have to put Richard Dunne in there too. He was immense as well and great for the club as a captain and one of the starters of going into the success.

“We have to talk about David Silva obviously, Yaya Toure, Gareth Barry was an underrated player, unbelievably important for the team.

“Carlos Tevez, he used to be an absolute warrior up front, then there’s Sergio Aguero. I can’t just say one player, everyone has different qualities.

“Zaba (Pablo Zabaleta), Gael Clichy, Aleksandr Kolarov, Edin Dzeko, they’re all special in their own way. If I had to pick one, I’d just pick the whole team.”

De Jong is right, with Pep City have vaulted in to international recognition from all places and it is well deserved. We’ll see how this season progresses.