Buckle up, Pep Guardiola gave a fantastic presser as he and his team look to bounce back from an epic collapse in the UCL semi finals. As the league title comes to a final stretch, the Catalan manager was honest and frank with his assessment and did not throw his players under the bus. A real good presser by him.
Let’s dive in-
“We were close and could not do it,” said Guardiola.
“The players wanted to play again in the final of the Champions League.
“But for this club to compete against Real Madrid was a joy. Don’t forget how well we played a week ago here. But we could not do it.
“We were good. I said after congratulations Liverpool and Madrid because they deserve to be in the final.
“Name all the clubs in Europe, the big ones, they are there every year.
“And we are there every year now. We didn’t achieve it, yeah okay.
“Next day we will do it. Good moments we celebrate, bad moments more sad than usual.
“Madrid are in the final because they deserve it. We were not close enough, but we were there. Next season we will try, knowing it is so difficult.”
“Football is incredibly unpredictable. We saw it. This team and this club, this is the feeling I have.
“Sheikh Mansour took over, bought the club and invested in these incredible facilities and players to be what we are the last years, not just to win the Champions League.
“They did it to be there in all competitions and compete. We want to do it [win the UCL].
“For us it is an honour. Maybe it is not enough, but for me it is remarkable to be in the semi-final of the Champions League again after last season and played the way we did home and away against a great team.
“Look at the teams who went out at the last 16 or didn’t qualify from the group since day one.
“I have to handle this. It’s not about that…in the Premier League again we are there, FA Cup semi-finals again. Carabao Cup four times in a row.
“This is what the club wants to be. This is why they seduce me to come here
“People in sport know how difficult everything is but I accept it. We are sad… of course we are sad.
“But now I am thinking only about Newcastle. That’s enough focus.
“This is the only concern I have and then after that Wolves and then West Ham. That’s what is in my mind.”
“We have recovered. We will be better tomorrow. It’s football, we accept it.
“We have a big challenge - especially this week. We have the Premier League season in our hands.”
“We’ll play Newcastle thinking of it. For sure. I know the players in the training sessions, meetings, warm-ups how committed they’ll be, I have no doubt.
Very sober and real from Pep. This is the right way forward, commiserate ow while praising leadership at executive and player level and then move forward on to the Newcastle match.
A lot left to play for still.