Guardiola questions purpose of managers after chaotic pre-season

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Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says he has questioned the purpose of managers after a pre-season spent largely without his first-team players with the new Premier League campaign less than a fortnight away.

City defeated Blackpool 4-1 on Tuesday, following up comfortable wins over Barnsley and Preston North End in pre-season ahead of their season opener against Tottenham on August 15.

Despite their good form, City have been without a host of players who have had breaks after their Euro 2020 and Copa America commitments including Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden, Ederson, Gabriel Jesus, John Stones, Kyle Walker, Aymeric Laporte and Ferran Torres.

"Now is a completely different world for all the managers, so we don't have time," Guardiola said after the game. "Sometimes we think 'what is the reason the manager is here in pre-season?'"

"Because we had three players, a few days we have five, the senior ones, then three-four more days we'll have three more or four more.

"Then one of them might have to be isolated because they fly on a plane with 150 people where one of them tested positive and they have to isolate. The challenge is to adapt.

"Before you have three-four-five weeks to prepare the concepts. Today it's impossible. Now the weeks go on thanks to the games and the weeks, and the weeks we get the condition because we don't have time.

"We cannot speak the ideas we want to play because we have just one month. In two or three weeks we will be altogether, so it's a little bit strange. We have to adapt, it is what it is."

Guardiola was more upbeat about 18-year-old forward Samuel Edozie who netted his third goal in three pre-season games to open the scoring against Blackpool.

Nigeria-born Edozie arrived from Millwall last year and the Spaniard labelled him "an incredible young player".

“Like all of them, as a young talent having a special quality, a guy who gets to the box with the intention to score the goal is important for wingers,” he said.

“He's an incredible young player, good pace. Be patient with him. With minutes they play good and this is important.”

City will play Leicester City in the Community Shield on Saturday.


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