A number of people have been heavily critical of the manner in which Manchester City exited the Champions League.
The Citizens were on the verge of booking a place in the final at the Bernabeu, but they saw their 2-0 advantage on aggregate vanish in a flash during two bonkers minutes.
A brace from Rodrygo Goes in stoppage-time leveled things up and Karim Benzema then fired home the winner for Real Madrid from the penalty spot in extra-time.
It was an epic collapse by City and fingers have been pointed in manager Pep Guardiola‘s direction, most notably by ex-Manchester United player Patrice Evra.
The Frenchman said in part of his rant: “Manchester City needs leaders, but Guardiola does not want leaders. He does not want personality. He’s the leader. That’s why when they’re in trouble they do not want to.
“They do not have anyone on the pitch to help them. He chooses his teams like that; he can not train people with personality. He did it at Barcelona, but he builds his team to control everyone. ”
Evra’s former teammate Dimitar Berbatov was also critical of City’s nightmare in Madrid, the Bulgarian likening it to Bayern Munich’s failure in the 1999 final against United.
Well, it seems Guardiola has finally had enough of the condemnation of his team.
In his latest press conference ahead of City’s Premier League match versus West Ham, the Spaniard fired back with a quite epic response.
Video: Guardiola responds to his critics
🗣 “I did not see when I played against them this kind of personality when we destroyed them.” 😅
Pep Guardiola responds to the comments from Dimitar Berbatov and Patrice Evra on him being unable to manage “big characters” pic.twitter.com/5JD8tixgH7
– Football Daily (@footballdaily) May 13, 2022
He said: “The same character and personality that lost in Madrid is what we have had for the last years. Specialist former players like [Dimitar] Berbatov, Seedorf and Evra and these types of people were not there.
“I played against them, and I did not see this kind of personality when we destroyed United in the Champions League final.
“Personality is what we have done in the last five years every three days in all competitions. Maybe Liverpool is going to win all four titles or maybe just one but I’m going to say that they do not have personality and character. ”
Fair play, Pep.
You can certainly see where he’s coming from as well.
City’s collapse was shocking, no one can deny that, but to say a team on the verge of securing a fourth Premier League title in five years ‘lacks character and personality’ is just plain wrong.
Of course, Guardiola will be in the perfect position to end his European hoodoo next season after the signing of Erling Braut Haaland…
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