Football

Guardiola apologises to Dyche after touchline row

Pep Guardiola said sorry to Burnley manager Sean Dyche for his behaviour after Manchester City equalised in their 4-1 FA Cup third-round victory.

City boss Guardiola gestured angrily towards Dyche, making a "yapping" gesture at his counterpart and the fourth official, as a furious row erupted between the two at Eastlands last Saturday, following Sergio Aguero's 56th-minute equaliser.

"I am sorry, I apologise. I didn't want to get out of control," Guardiola said.

Aguero's leveller came from a quickly taken Ilkay Guendogan free-kick which angered Burnley players, who thought that referee Graham Scott allowed the set-piece to be taken before they were ready.

Guardiola later claimed his gestures were simply a request for Burnley to leave the officials alone, but it was certainly an ugly scene and one that ended with fourth official Andy Haines ordering the Spaniard to return to his technical area.

"I said 'Leave the referees please'. I have a lot of respect for what he (Dyche) does and the way he plays is completely different to how we want to play.

"But they do it perfectly and that is why football is top.

"I think all the managers around the world have to control. If they were offended, I am sorry."

Dyche laughed off suggestions that there was any ill-feeling with Guardiola over the equaliser, but was angered by the officiating that led to the City goal.

"You both fight, you both want to win, you both want your teams to win," he said.

"That's how it should be. I believe everybody is allowed to be passionate. The referee said he didn't have to blow the whistle, but Ashley Westwood was five yards away and the ball went through the gap where he should have been.

"Sometimes in football, the rule may be the rule but there's a common-sense moment, we've just allowed it to be passed through, I'm bound to be aggrieved by that."

That flashpoint was a rare moment of concern for Guardiola on an afternoon in which they stormed back after trailing to Ashley Barnes' first-half goal.

Aguero's brace, which came inside 94 seconds, plus further efforts from Leroy Sane and Bernardo Silva carried City through to the fourth round of the cup. - AFP

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