Man City will form guard of honour for ‘exceptional’ Liverpool – Pep Guardiola

Man City will form guard of honour for ‘exceptional’ Liverpool – Pep Guardiola

Manchester City will form a guard of honour for new champions Liverpool when the sides meet next Thursday, manager Pep Guardiola has said.

Liverpool took the Premier League crown City have worn for the last two years when they ended their own 30-year quest for a league title this week.

When football resumed after lockdown earlier this month, the Reds’ upcoming trip to the Etihad Stadium had been earmarked as the potentially decisive game in the title race.

Liverpool have left City trailing during an outstanding season (Phil Noble/NMC Pool)
Liverpool have left City trailing during an outstanding season (Phil Noble/NMC Pool)

But City’s loss at Chelsea last Thursday put the Merseysiders mathematically out of reach and Guardiola feels it would be sporting to pay tribute to Jurgen Klopp’s men.

“Of course we are going to do it,” said Guardiola. “We are going to do the guard of honour of course.

“Always we receive Liverpool when they come to our house in an incredible way. They cannot complain and of course we are going to do it because they deserve it.”

After missing out to City by a point last season, European champions Liverpool have been dominant this term, securing the title with a record seven games to spare, winning 28 of 31 matches. They will travel to Manchester with a 23-point advantage over second-placed City.

Guardiola insists City’s hunger has not dipped since last season’s treble (Nick Potts/PA)
Guardiola insists City’s hunger has not dipped since last season’s treble (Nick Potts/PA)

It has been suggested City’s hunger or passion may have dipped following last year’s treble success but Guardiola insists that is not true.

He said: “A team that wins eight titles (trophies) in the last three years have passion, in every single game, in every competition, everywhere. No one in this country can say that.

“It is so difficult to do what we have done in the most difficult league in the world but you cannot win all the time.

“There was one team that was exceptional and, when one team is exceptional, I say learn from them and congratulate them. It is simple.

“This team’s passion and desire, it is going and going and going again.”

City still have much to play for, including the Champions League, which will resume in August, and the FA Cup. They travel to Newcastle for their delayed quarter-final tie on Sunday.

Guardiola said: “Right now it is a priority because it is the next game and we can get Wembley again in the semi-final. I saw Newcastle and they have the weapons to punish us.

“The important thing is this game and after you can finish the Premier League as best as possible, finish second, and after that we have time to prepare for (Real) Madrid.”

More on this topic

Olivier Giroud goal keeps Chelsea on course for Champions LeagueOlivier Giroud goal keeps Chelsea on course for Champions League

We’ll put it right – Solskjaer backs United to bounce back from Saints setbackWe’ll put it right – Solskjaer backs United to bounce back from Saints setback

Manchester United’s Champions League hopes hit by last-gasp Saints levellerManchester United’s Champions League hopes hit by last-gasp Saints leveller

Terrace Talk: Liverpool - Pretending none of the record talk matters is a feeble ruse to bypass disappointmentTerrace Talk: Liverpool - Pretending none of the record talk matters is a feeble ruse to bypass disappointment


More in this Section

Frank Lampard adamant he can solve Chelsea’s defensive woesFrank Lampard adamant he can solve Chelsea’s defensive woes

James McClean questions Irish teammates' attitude to discriminationJames McClean questions Irish teammates' attitude to discrimination

We’ll put it right – Solskjaer backs United to bounce back from Saints setbackWe’ll put it right – Solskjaer backs United to bounce back from Saints setback

McClean questions Irish teammates' attitude to discriminationMcClean questions Irish teammates' attitude to discrimination


Lifestyle

The world is in chaos and fascism is on the march. But enough about 2020 – what about America in 1940?The Plot Against America: Sky Atlantic series shows a parallel history that has echoes of today's world

Ubisoft has given us a look of some of their upcoming releasesGame Tech: A glimpse of Far Cry 6 and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla

Exfoliating cleansers are the first step in upgrading your skincare routine.The Skin Nerd: How to get active when it comes to cleansing

The arrival of the new baby has led to a tricky family dynamic in the Cork-set show, writes Georgia HumphreysBaby's arrival leads to more adventures as the Young Offenders return

More From The Irish Examiner