Guardiola: The Premier League has made me a better manager

Guardiola: The Premier League has made me a better manager

Pep Guardiola believes he has become a better manager after spending four years in the Premier League with Manchester City.

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss is into his fifth campaign as City boss – his longest reign at one club – and this week signed up for another two seasons.

He has won six major trophies during his time at the Etihad Stadium, including two league titles in 2017-18 and 2018-19, the first of those with a record 100-points tally.

And Guardiola, who also won a plethora of honours at Camp Nou and the Allianz Arena, is grateful to have been given the chance to coach in England’s top flight.

“English football is fascinating because there are many different cultures in one league and different ways and I’ve learnt a lot as a manager since being here,” he told Sky Sports.

“Watching some incredible colleagues in England and the incredible players that are in this league, I feel I’m a better manager than when I landed here. So I can just say thank you for this opportunity.

“I’m going to stay longer and enjoy that and learn from all of them. In five seasons, many things happen in good ways and not good ways – it’s normal.

“We have talked but always when we put all the situations on the table, we decided that still we can be together for a longer time.

“This is a club that in the past, didn’t win much. In the recent past with Roberto [Mancini] and Manuel [Pellegrini], they won and the most recent past, we won and won again.

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“In three seasons, we won eight titles [including two Community Shield triumphs], which is a lot in world football and especially in England.”

Guardiola explained upon signing his new contract on Thursday that he has “unfinished business” at City, with the Champions League so far eluding him.

City have exited at the quarter-final stage in the past three seasons and only made it as far as the last 16 during Guardiola’s first campaign in 2016-17.

“The unfinished business is to continue to [be successful] when, in the history of this club, it was not able to do it,” he said when asked to explain his comments.

“It is to maintain during the seasons, winning titles or being there fighting for titles. This is the target, not a specific trophy, but be able to maintain this club as high as possible in terms of football.

“It’s always difficult [to win titles]. Saying that now it’s more difficult looks like the years before it was not and it was the complete opposite.”

City finished 18 points behind champions Liverpool last season and their return of 12 points from seven games this term is the fewest collected by a Guardiola-led side at this stage of a league campaign.

But the 49-year-old is relishing the chance to continue reshaping his squad in the hope of returning to the top.

“[Building] the teams is not a finished business,” he said. “It’s not something like this season, you have it and it will always be for the rest [of the seasons].

“People change, the opponents know you better and you have to evolve through this but that is the reason why our job is nice.

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“If everything was always the same, the same training sessions, the same ideas, the same way we play, it would be boring.

“But the moment someone creates a problem or you are dropping something and you have to lift the players, that is what is nice.”

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