Published: Sat, August 12, 2017
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

Guardiola says he's not moved by talk that Man City are favourites

Pep Guardiola's side open their Premier League campaign at newly promoted Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday, where they will aim to bounce back from a trophyless 2016-17.

"I would like in three or four passes to score a goal, but sometimes it's not possible and you have to move them [the opposition] a little bit more, and because our strikers are not Peter Crouch, our strikers are completely different, they are not strong in the air". In the next three or four years Manchester City will buy one, two, maybe three players.

"We have spent, of course, but all the teams have spent", he continued.

"It's to try to put them in a better position to win the title".

The Spaniard's Liverpool counterpart, Jurgen Klopp, had on Thursday dubbed the Manchester club "incredible", tipping them for the title as the League resumes Friday. They've already made three (Walker, Mendy and Danilo) which may be sufficient at the moment.

"We feel ready because we've been at a good level but we have nothing to show for it at the moment", said City captain Vincent Kompany.

Fortified by Manchester City's £200 million ($260 million) overhaul, Pep Guardiola is under pressure to ensure his second season in the Premier League is far more successful than his torrid first.

Guardiola struck a satisfied tone when discussing his raft of fresh full-backs and their ability to have a transformative effect on City's play this season.

He said: "Last season we were favourites too and finished 15 points behind and, from my experience as a manager, always in the beginning of the season, the new teams are the toughest ones".

"It is a brilliant game for the fans and it is just something to look forward to".

Also worth noting that Burnley's away record last season was awful, and their first five away games are at Chelsea, Tottenham, Liverpool, Everton and Manchester City, so it will be neon impossible to keep clean sheets in these games.

This should also be the season for John Stones, who certainly didn't do what he was bought to do last season.

"You've got to be able to overcome those hard experiences that are going to come in this league".

"I have a lot of respect for the players I had, I never complained for one bad game or bad defeat, making excuses, never, even in Germany I never said that, never in my life I make an excuse about what happened", he added.

"I am lucky because I used to play under Pep at Barcelona and I know what he wants". "I know it's a big responsibility considering I have become one of the most expensive goalkeepers".

"The group of players we will see this season is going to stay a long time here at Manchester City". You've got to question which teams will make the Premier League a priority over Europe and I think Guardiola would take the Premier League over the Champions League because it's the title missing from his CV.

"Most of the players - Sergio [Aguero], Raz [Raheem Sterling], Leroy [Sane], Gabriel [Jesus], Bernardo Silva - all of them are young and will stay for the future".

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