Pep Guardiola spoke about Manchester City winning 15-straight games in all competitions without having a superstar player, and said they don’t have a player who can win a game by himself.
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Kevin de Bruyne, Sergio Aguero and many others would like a word, Pep. But we get what he means and the aforementioned duo haven’t featured much due to injury during City’s incredible surge to the top of the Premier League table in recent months.
Speaking to journalists after the 3-0 demolition of Tottenham on Saturday, Guardiola is all about putting the team first.
“We don’t have players who can win the game by himself – we don’t have a Messi, a Cristiano, Mbappe or Neymar,” Guardiola said. “We have to do it as a team.”
Manchester City boss keen to add superstar
ProSoccerTalk then asked Guardiola about those comments, and if he prefers the total-team approach (which is working bloody well right now) compared to having a superstar dominating.
“I’ll be honest, I would love to have a player who scores every single game four goals and runs like these players run, I would love it,” Guardiola smiled. “I wouldn’t change any player that we have right now today, in this season. All of them. That’s why many times I praised our captain Fernandinho, like how he helps on and off the pitch to stick together in the bad moments.
“The big teams, the big players show it in the bad moments, in the good moments everyone is easy to play, and we had the bad moments this season. We had a moment when we were in 12th position in the table, we were five points away from Tottenham [and eight after the loss] who were top of the league when we lost there and now we are 17 points ahead of them. So that means consistency, how we turned over this situation, and that means a lot. Maybe that won’t be enough to win the title, but what we enjoyed the last two months belongs to us.”
Lionel Messi to Manchester City?
Look, the immediate thought that comes to mind when Pep casually dropped the names of Messi, Ronaldo, Neymar and Mbappe into the conversation was, of course, Messi.
He is out of contract this summer and has yet to announce who he will sign for, or if he will stay at Barcelona, and Guardiola’s connection with Messi remains strong.
That said, with De Bruyne, Sterling, Gundogan, Mahrez, Bernardo Silva and Phil Foden, among others, delivering the goods consistently, do Man City really need to bring in a superstar? Doesn’t Pep’s well-oiled machine work better when it doesn’t have to rely on one player?
That is the beauty of this. If Messi does arrive in the summer, he can complement the incredible attacking talents Manchester City already have.