Pep Guardiola fires back at Gary Neville’s ‘boring’ jibe

Guardiola defends Manchester City against Gary Neville’s ‘boring’ accusations, highlighting the team’s challenges and global admiration.

Pep Guardiola: Manchester City
Pep Guardiola: Manchester City / Justin Setterfield/GettyImages

Premier League heavyweights Manchester City secured an enthralling 3-1 away win in the round of 16 first-leg tie against FC Copenhagen on Tuesday, and stamped their authority with the performance indicating they are on course of securing back-to-back trebles.

However, the midweek action did not interest former Manchester United defender Gary Neville, who speaking on the Stick to Football podcast, remarked:

" I didn’t switch City on on Tuesday night. I felt a bit bored… It’s a bit of hornet’s nest because I think to call City boring would be wrong because the football they play is outstanding. "

"I thought they were boring and found it difficult to watch them but since [Erling] Haaland’s gone [there] they are a bit more imperfect. I like them a lot more with the four big defenders and Haaland up front. But is there a bit of a boredom thing with City?"

Ahead of City’s clash against Chelsea, manager Pep Guardiola was asked to comment on Neville’s statement.

The Spanish tactician gave a staunch response by saying:

"I am going to tell you something – in the future you will not forget: it looks easy, but it’s not."

"Remember that sentence: it’s easy but it’s not. Thank you for the compliment [Neville]. What can I say? It’s so fine. Everything is so difficult in football. You have to do so many things to try to win games [for so] many years. What these players have done for many years and this season as well is admirable."

The 53-year-old manager asserted the world recognizes and admires the style of play of City and stated that critics cannot be ignorant of the difficulties faced by the club in achieving success on a consistent basis.

"Of course we [are given] credit. We are admired. I am pretty sure of that. The people in the world of football know how difficult it is,"

he continued

"The opponents respect us. Always I said the same. Sometimes [for] people it is not enough what we are doing, but I know how difficult it is, from my experience as a manager in other clubs and when I was a football player. If people don’t appreciate it, it doesn’t matter. It’s not a big problem. [But] I think they do appreciate it – the world of football."

The reigning champions have won five of the last six Premier League titles and have been a dominant force this season as well, winning 11 games in a row ahead of their match against Chelsea on Saturday.