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Sky Blue News: Pep’s Plans, Gomez Shirt Number, Mendy Case Updates, and More...

Yesterday’s news to get you ready for today

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Manchester City v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League Photo by Robin Jones - AFC Bournemouth/AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images

Good morning Cityzens, and a happy Tuesday. Before we turn our eyes to this weekend’s trip to St. James’ Gate, let’s get you caught up on the latest headlines form around the web.

Pep Guardiola is planning for a different Man City side to win Premier League title this year - Joe Bray - Manchester Evening News

Pep is clearly happy with the start to this season, but reminds us to not get ahead of ourselves in the early going.

Guardiola was philosophical when assessing City’s start to the current season, with six points won from six and no goals conceded.

“We are not champions of the Premier League, that is for sure,” he said after the Bournemouth win. “Just more than 100 points to play for but nothing to complain, especially zero goals. The fact that today we concede one shot on target and last week West Ham, Antonio the header and Declan Rice shot at goal. Apart from that we didn’t concede much and that is the most important thing.

“We have the desire to regain the ball and with the ball we are really well organised in our patterns. Every time we lose the ball we don’t concede, the runners, the counter-attacks, that is so important. Especially the teams like West Ham, here they wait a little bit the transitions to do it. After the quality of the players makes.”

As much as City’s goalscoring is taking the headlines - mainly how Erling Haaland fits into the attack - it’s telling that Guardiola is focussing on the solidity of his defence, with his subsequent comments explaining how he’s already looking at the bigger picture of City’s title chances.

Pep Guardiola and the importance of a strong start - Saul Garcia - Bitter and Blue

Certainly other clubs would kill to have City’s problems. Too much quality to get it all on the pitch. Maybe 9 subs next season.

“We spoke that we had not done it but especially because it was tough not to play Jack because he played awesome against West Ham.

“But at the same time Riyad (Mahrez) is always so important in the small spaces and can find the right pass and action.

“And Phil is so important, he always creates something unexpected, he is dynamic, he is intelligent with his movement but at the same time he is young and sometimes he still has to understand what he has to do.

“After 45 minutes I wanted Jack to play. It was a tough decision for me to not play him because he played well against West Ham.

“I had the feeling he was ready, the games in pre-season and especially against West Ham he was really, really good.”

A great way to motivate the players. Man management is string with Pep as we see here. Let’s hope it leads to continued success.

Revealed: What shirt number will Sergio Gomez wear at Manchester City - Harry Winters - City Xtra

The next in a line of Spaniards to wear the 21 shirt for Manchester City.

Pep Guardiola confirmed on Friday that Gomez will remain with the Manchester City first-team squad for the 2022/23 campaign.

“He’s for now, he will stay with us, the squad, alongside Joao [Cancelo], Josh [Wilson-Esbrand] and him for the left-backs, he’ll stay with us,” said the City manager.

The 21 year-old will wear the number 21 shirt for Manchester City, as confirmed by the club.

Gomez becomes the latest Spaniard to hold the squad number 21, made famous by legend David Silva.

Silva made 436 appearances for Manchester City, winning 13 trophies including four Premier League titles.

Premier League’s best and worst kits of the past 30 years, from instant classics to clashing catastrophes - Chris Wright - ESPN

Speaking of shirts, ESPN gives us the 10 Best and 10 Worst tops in the 30 years of the Premier League. Spoiler alert: They love the 15/16 home kit. The tequila sunrise set.... not so much.

5. Manchester City: home, 2015-16 (Nike)

The perfect encapsulation of City’s post-takeover makeover, the club’s 2015-16 refined home shirt saw the return of white trim — most notably the reintroduction of a contrasting polo collar, replacing the all-blue of the previous season.

The polo collar with concealed buttons was chosen as a visual reference to archetypal Mancunian street wear (“structured yet laid-back”) as well as the attire synonymous with the city’s legendary indie music scene.

Alas, the 2015-16 campaign didn’t prove to be a vintage one for City, who finished fourth in the Premier League while getting themselves dumped out of the semifinals of the Champions League by Real Madrid. However, Manuel Pellegrini’s side did at least manage to end the year with a little bit of silverware to show for their efforts after winning the League Cup final on penalties against Liverpool.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp rules out two-horse title race with Man City - Ricky Charlesworth - Manchester Evening News

The Liverpool boss attempts to take some heat off the title race.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Klopp says his side are constantly trying to be better versions of themselves rather than just keep pace with City.

The German said: “We won against City (in the Community Shield) and everyone was asking ‘will (Erling) Haaland score?’ It’s not so important if he can go to whatever level with Man City, it’s more important that we can reach the same level and then go from there like the last few years, and try to improve. And that’s what we are working on really.

“I saw a lot of things in the City game where this was obvious for me and which felt really good. I would be happy if it’s a two-horse race and that we just have to be concerned about City but I can’t see that to be honest. Tottenham look really settled with (Antonio) Conte in there and will be really tough to play against. Arsenal look ready too, but the season is so young.”

Erling Haaland vs Darwin Nunez: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp offers his take on the Manchester City star - Declan Harris - City Xtra

Klopp also warns that it may take time for him to figure out Darwin Nunez. He doesn’t think Pep will have the same problem with his new striker.

From Jurgen Klopp’s perspective, the same cannot be said regarding Manchester City head coach Pep Guardiola and Erling Haaland, as he feels the two sides were destined to work out for each other.

“It was always clear that (Erling) Haaland and Manchester City was going to work out.”

“They are a chance producing side and he is a finisher,” said Klopp.

Although the Reds’ head coach does not want there to be a competition from the start, he is not completely close minded to the idea should it come later in the season and as a way of motivating Nunez.

“If there is a situation at the end of the season about goalscoring or whatever — maybe it could be something (to motivate him),” explained Klopp.

Benjamin Mendy raped women in ‘panic rooms’, jury told - The Guardian

In a bit of horrible news...

Two of the women said Mendy raped them in rooms they believed to be locked. The jury was shown video footage of a police officer demonstrating the locks on the doors, as Cray explained they were legitimately used by wealthy individuals.

“The logic is that if you are likely to be a target for burglars, the locks in effect create a panic room that you can’t get in from the outside, but you can open them from the inside if you know what to do. The point is that you have to know how to open them from the inside, and you’ll perhaps see how the witnesses might have gotten the impression … that they are locked in,” said Cray.

Both men knew what they were doing, Cray said. “They were not in some happy state of sexual ignorance about how this all works – they knew very well what they were doing. They turned the pursuit of women for sex into a game, in effect, and if women got hurt or distressed – too bad. Make it go away.”


On a much brighter note for City. Our boy Cole Palmer is on the short list for a major award.

The trophy, organised by Italian sports paper Tuttosport since its inception in 2003, sees votes cast for the top football player under the age of 21 currently active in Europe.

Palmer has enjoyed a truly memorable 12 months, seeing him make his Premier League and FA Cup debut, while also grabbing his first senior goal for City.

That’s My Club: Blue Moon Dallas - Thomas Duck - Bitter and Blue

And finally... Yours truly has started a new feature on Official Supporters Clubs. Keep an eye on this space to see if I spotlight your club.

That’s it for today. Be sure to come back tomorrow for more fresh headlines!!