With the “Citizens” being unbeaten in the season and the match against rivals Manchester United taking place this Saturday, Pep Guardiola looks ready to lead the club to the top again and help them play exciting football as well.
When the Catalan coach took over a couple of moths ago, Manchester City was coming from a disappointing season that saw the team finish fourth and fail to win the title.
As a result, Manuel Pellegrini was let go and Guardiola was appointed as his replacement, with the former Bayern Munich manager making many changes to the roster and signing players that could adapt to his tactics.
More specifically, John Stones, one of Everton’s best players, was acquired in order to make the difference defensively, while Nolito and Ilkay Gundogan are expected to offer decent solutions in the offensive and midfield line, respectively.
At the same time, Guardiola seems to have changed the side’s mentality, as the “Citizens” have a more confident playing style that relies on quick-thinking and even quicker passing.
Based on the 45-year-old manager’s tactics, every player can be effective in more than one positions on the pitch, while Guardiola wants from the goalkeeper and the defenders to help the team have good and quick ball movement.
And that’s why Stones and Barcelona’s Claudio Bravo joined the club, because they both are ideal for Pep’s playing style.
Until now, what we have seen is Guardiola’s decision to completely change the squad’s tactical approach.
For instance, Fernandinho acts as a play-maker, helping the wing backs retain the balance between the offensive and defensive line, while the midfielders and the wingers come closer to Sergio Aguero, who usually is the only striker, offering him more help.
Concurrently, David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne have rapidly enhanced their performances, having a similar role to the one Andres Iniesta had (and still has) in Barcelona, while Raheem Sterling has made a great start to the season.
It seems that the Catalan manager’s aim is to have good ball movement and take advantage of his wingers’ effectiveness in one on one plays as well as be solid defensively.
As the “Citizens” are still unbeaten, having conceded just one goal and being more aggressive offensively, they want to continue that way against rivals Manchester United.
The “Red Devils” have also made a great start to the season, being undefeated as well, and Jose Mourinho’s sole target is to claim the title as United’s manager.
That said, Saturday’s derby is highly anticipated and it will certainly be a great opportunity for Guardiola to show he has already enhanced the “Citizens’” performance, with City playing at high standards so far and being considered title favourites again.