January 28, 2023

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England asks questions

  • Manchester City – Tottenham, 21:00 Thursday

On Thursday, Tottenham will be waiting at home for Erling Braut Haaland and his team mates. With eight points clear of league leaders Arsenal, City must win. Manager Pep Guardiola introduced this afternoon at a press conference in Manchester.

On the poor stats — with two straight losses and only one shot on goal — he says:

– The reason is that the flow was not as good as usual. Sometimes you need a good building game. We must deploy the defensive lines. But yeah, we struggled in the last two games.

The ‘shot on goal’ was Jack Grealish’s header as City lost 2-1 in the Manchester derby on Saturday.

He has challenges: Pep Guardiola must get Manchester City back on the winning track. Photo: NTB
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Indeed, it has been four games since Erling Braut Haaland scored. The last time that happened was against Everton on New Year’s Eve. In addition, he had very few touches on the ball.

But Guardiola dismisses any suggestion that the image may be starting to crack, and that he is not tailor-made for the City side after all. The Manchester Evening News, a local newspaper, wrote that the manager had “defended Haaland” at the press conference.

– We played very well with him. To play better, we must give him and the other attackers as many balls as possible. This is what we have to work on, points out Guardiola.

For the record: the Norwegian is still the Premier League’s top scorer with 21 goals.

But eight points for Arsenal would be great. The Tottenham game will be important. The city could not afford to lose any more land.

– If you are late, you cannot lose points. We can’t think of anything but winning the next game. Guardiola says: We’ve been in this situation many times before.

READY TO MATCH: Kevin De Bruyne wasn't in training on Tuesday, but is ready to play against Tottenham.  Photo: NTB

READY TO MATCH: Kevin De Bruyne wasn’t in training on Tuesday, but is ready to play against Tottenham. Photo: NTB
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Midfielder Kevin De Bruyne missed training on Tuesday, which sparked speculation in England.

– There were personal reasons for that, says Guardiola, who stated that the Belgian was back again and available for the Tottenham game.

John Stones and Robin Dias are also back after injuries. Fifth-placed Tottenham are as desperate as City to get three points.

Premier League

Arsenal 18 15 2 1 42 14 47
Manchester C. 18 12 3 3 46 18 39
New Castle 19 10 8 1 33 11 38
Manchester United 18 12 2 4 29 21 38
spurs 19 10 3 6 37 27 33
Fulham 20 9 4 7 32 29 31
Brighton 18 9 3 6 35 25 30
Brentford 19 7 8 4 32 28 29
Liverpool 18 8 4 6 34 25 28
Chelsea 19 8 4 7 22 21 28
Aston Villa 19 7 4 8 22 27 25
Crystal Palace 18 6 4 8 17 26 22
Nottingham F.C. 19 5 5 9 15 34 20
lester 19 5 2 12 26 33 17
Leeds 18 4 5 9 26 33 17
Wolverhampton 19 4 5 10 12 27 17
Bournemouth 19 4 4 11 18 41 16
West Ham 19 4 3 12 15 25 15
everton 19 3 6 10 15 26 15
Southampton 19 4 3 12 17 34 15

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