Pep Guardiola was expected by many to walk the Premier League when he moved to Manchester City but the fact of the matter is that was never going to happen, and the Catalan boss needs to prove himself in English football.
Despite all the success he achieved in Bayern Munich, the argument that he underperformed in Bavaria has some value as the German giants failed to win the Champions League during his spell or even reach the final.
Last winning Europe’s illustrious prize in 2011, football has come a long way since and Guardiola has fallen short in Europe. Now, in the Premier League, it seems his struggles have now followed him to the domestic league.
Firstly, I’d like to say the fact that I’m saying no Champions League titles for six years is a testament to Guardiola’s ability in itself. After all, the likes of Arsene Wenger, Antonio Conte and Jurgen Klopp haven’t lifted the trophy as a manager.
For Guardiola though, deemed by many to be the best in the world, it’s a disappointing record. Whilst many will argue he needs time to build the City squad to compete, the argument is thrown apart by two main reasons.
Number one is the fact that he’s already had one summer in the job, knew he was getting the position long before his actual appointment and spent more money than any other manager with a whopping £174m splashed out.
That’s £24m more than Manchester United, £50m more than league leaders Chelsea, almost £80m more than Arsenal and way, way ahead of Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool- both of whom currently sit ahead of the Citizens in the table.
Secondly, Antonio Conte hasn’t needed time to adjust or settle in, he’s grabbed the bull by both horns and built Chelsea into a top-class side once again. Sure, that side was Premier League champions only one season prior but they were horrendous last season.
Finally, City do have a side capable of winning the league. Claudio Bravo, for all his criticisms, is still a goalkeeper who’s won a number of honours in recent years, including two international tournaments, and the defence, although shaky, still boasts a £50m defender and a number of top-class internationals from some of the best nations.
Raheem Sterling, Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and Ilkay Gundogan are comparable, if not better, than Chelsea’s midfielder and Sergio Aguero is still arguably the best striker in the Premier League – so why are they falling short?
The answer isn’t obvious at all but the argument that Guardiola needs time and fans need to be patient is wrong.
You cannot call for that after spending close to £200m and still leading one of the best squads in the Premier League.
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