Pogba on motivation: If City won “for fans it would be like death”

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Paul Pogba had a second half that few Manchester United fans will soon forget, scoring twice as the Red Devils dug out of a 2-0 hole to beat Manchester City 3-2 on Saturday at the Etihad Stadium.

[ MORE: Mou praises Pogba ]

You may have heard that City would’ve clinched the Premier League with a win over their cross-city rivals — yes, really — and now may not clinch next weekend if Manchester United handles its business against Championship-bound West Bromwich Albion.

United may not care if City does that, however, just that it’s not… gonna… happen… against… them:

“I didn’t want to lose against City. The loss from last season is still in my mind. If they won, they are champions, for all the fans it would be like death. To lose against City and to see them celebrate, I couldn’t let that happen. At half-time in the dressing room we said, ‘We have nothing to lose, 2-0, let’s do it’.”

Tell you what: Pogba enjoys his time in the spotlight almost as much as his manager. Perhaps the reason Jose Mourinho and his star midfielder (allegedly) butt heads is that whole “don’t like in others what I don’t like in myself” thing.

AT HALF: Kompany thunder, Gundogan silk have Man City on brink (video)

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Manchester City is all over Manchester United, building a 2-0 halftime lead at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday and moving to within one half of the Premier League title.

[ WATCH LIVE: Manchester Derby ]

Pep Guardiola‘s men are showing no ill effects of a 3-0 first leg UEFA Champions League loss to Liverpool on Wednesday, and City has done it with Kevin De Bruyne, Sergio Aguero, and Aymeric Laporte on the bench.

The poetics of Vincent Kompany getting on the board in the 25th minute aren’t lost on the blue side of Manchester, and he thundered by Chris Smalling to smoke a header beyond De Gea despite a strong tug on the back of shirt.

An ethereal turn from Gundogan put the title on their lips, as he finished a 1-2 by slipping a goal inside the far post.

FULL MATCH REPLAY: The Manchester Derby

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Manchester City could’ve won the Premier League with a win over visiting derby rivals Manchester United on Saturday at the Etihad Stadium.

WATCH FULL MATCH REPLAY, ONLINE, HERE

Instead, a 2-0 halftime lead turned into a loss at the hands of Jose Mourinho and the Red Devils.

LINEUPS

Manchester City: Ederson, Danilo, Kompany, Otamendi, Delph, Fernandinho, Gundogan, Bernardo, David Silva, Sane, Sterling, Subs. Bravo, Walker, Agüero, Laporte, De Bruyne, Jesus, Yaya Touré

Manchester United: De Gea, Valencia, Smalling, Bailly, Young, Matic, Herrera, Pogba, Lingard, Lukaku, Alexis. Subs: Pereira, Lindelof, Rojo, McTominay, Mata, Martial, Rashford.

Klopp “angry” at fixture time switches around UCL matches

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What’s five hours on a match day?

For Jurgen Klopp, the answer is a lot.

[ MORE: Liverpool “not the favorites” vs. City ]

While most were expecting to discuss Liverpool’s draw of Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals — and they got that, too — Klopp used part of his Friday press conference to complain about the shifting of the Premier League kickoff time between the two legs.

Klopp’s Liverpool will now contest the Merseyside Derby in the early match on April 7 instead of April 8, with the Manchester Derby staged five hours later.

Derbies and the UCL
April 4 – Liverpool vs. Manchester City
April 7 – Everton vs. Liverpool — 7:30 a.m. ET
April 7 – Manchester City vs. Manchester United — 12:30 p.m. ET
April 10 – Manchester City vs. Liverpool

This, of course, also gives Liverpool five more hours rest than Man City, but Klopp’s not going to let that get in the way of his narrative.

“I know countries where they cancel whole match days so teams can be in the best shape. We play Wednesday night against Manchester City and then play Everton at 1230 three days later. That’s not too cool but obviously we have to go the hard way, I am used to that.

“We play Wednesday night and then at 1230 means the players get up on Thursday and have lunch or breakfast and then we train and next day we are on second-day recovery and then you start at 1230.

“It is not perfect. We take it like it is but if I cannot be angry about something like that anymore and have to be politically correct and say nothing then I am dead because that doesn’t work.”

Moving the matches is interesting, but would only serve to congest both sides’ schedules at another time, so… Whatever, Jurgen. He’s one of the most colorful characters in the football world, so we’re happy he exists, but if these words were coming out of Jose Mourinho’s mouth the world would be frothing at his attitude.

Keeping in mind that derbies are derbies and both of these are fierce ones, maybe Pep Guardiola should mention that Klopp has to go against Sam Allardyce and Everton in between fixtures while Pep matches wits with Jose Mourinho with (probably) a chance to clinch the Premier League.

Mourinho: Celebration disagreement rooted in behavior, education

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Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola was the first to be asked about the post-match incident between his victorious visitors at Manchester United at Old Trafford.

United boss Jose Mourinho is alleged to have charged into the City dressing room, enraged at the volume of celebrations coming from within the visitors’ quarters.

[ MORE: Klopp responds to interview hubbub ]

What followed, again allegedly, was a brawl which included milk being thrown at Mourinho and a bloodied City assistant in the form of Mikel Arteta.

Mourinho said the incident is in the past, only offering this response to Guardiola’s assertion that the celebrations weren’t over the top. From the BBC:

“He says he says, I’m not here to comment on his words the only thing I can say is that for me was just a question of diversity. Diversity in behaviors, diversity in education, just that and nothing more.”

In other words, Mourinho thinks he’s a bit classier. That and a bag of chips gets you a bag of chips on the table.