Results first, style later

Guardiola says Man City's players need time to grasp his philosophy


(Tonight, 11pm, Singtel TV Ch 102 & 
StarHub TV Ch 227)

Pep Guardiola expects his methods to take time to sink in at Manchester City but, in the meantime, he just wants to win games.

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss has made a confident start as City's new manager, winning his first four games.

Some of the Spaniard's systems and tactics have been eye-catching, notably the fluid movement of defenders with fullbacks pushing into central midfield and centre backs moving wider.

Guardiola says the approach will be modified depending on the opposition and he is not expecting his players to grasp everything immediately.

For now, he recognises the importance of merely winning games to build confidence.

Reflecting on his first impressions of England, Guardiola said: "Congratulations to the Premier League because it is well organised with traditional stadiums.

"It's very tough, so demanding.

"But I will try and implement our point of view, our way, to see our game here in England.

"I'm so excited to convince our players to play the way we like. Until now, of course, results help."

The 45-year-old added that new signing Claudio Bravo will not be rushed straight into the starting 11 for their Premier League clash with West Ham tonight.

The Chile international completed a £13.75-million ($24.5m) move from Barcelona to City earlier this week and was expected to be immediately installed as Guardiola's new No. 1.


But the Spaniard, who has so far preferred Willy Caballero to Joe Hart in the Premier League, does not think the 33-year-old Bravo is ready for action yet.

It is therefore likely that Caballero will play, even though England international Hart was restored to the starting line-up for Thursday's Champions League play-off victory over Steaua Bucharest.

Guardiola said of Bravo: "He's fit, but he's not going to play this weekend."

The manager, however, made clear he feels the new signing fits the bill in terms of the ball-playing goalkeeper he is looking for, with Hart's distribution being his perceived weakness.

The City boss said of Bravo: "He's a goalkeeper with a lot of experience in Spain and with the (Chile) national team.

"His experience, to anticipate situations not in the box and in front of the box, being good in the build-up play and quick under the posts - he is a good player for us."

The Chilean, meanwhile, said that his new boss and his footballing philosophy are infectious.

"I think when the best manager in the world explains a project to you, it makes you motivated to see football differently. It's infectious," he told City's official website.

"It makes me happy but there is also a big expectation...

"We always come with the idea to win everything, even more so when you realise the size of the club.

"The ambition is huge."

Bravo's arrival has thrown Hart's future at the club into doubt. The 29-year-old could find himself third choice if he opts to stay at City beyond next week's transfer deadline.

Guardiola has said he can move if he wishes but Everton, the club most strongly linked with him, have said they have no interest.

Sevilla's reported enthusiasm has also cooled, leaving Hart - who could fear for his England place - with few apparent options. - Wire Services.

When the best manager in the world explains a project to you, it makes you motivated to see football differently.

— New signing Claudio Bravo on Man City boss Pep Guardiola

Footballenglish premier leaguemanchester city