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British press blast Guardiola's "mad professor experiment"

UK newspapers focused on the City manager's excessively attacking strategy: "Playing like that against a side like Chelsea is ridiculously imprudent".

Pep Guardiola.
Marc AtkinsGetty Images

Chelsea lifted their second Champions League trophy and left Manchester City yearning at the gates of glory in Porto on Saturday night. Tuchel's team were simply better than Guardiola's on the night. Chelsea captain Azpilicueta lifted the trophy to crown a memorable night for the Blues - and for Pep Guardiola, but for all the wrong reasons. The English press ripped the City coach's tactic plan apart whilst praising Tuchel for his approach to the game. In terms of tactics, the German apprentice outwitted the Spanish master.

'The Mirror': "A serious error of judgement by Guardiola"

"Yet again Guardiola sprung a surprise with his starting line-up ahead of a huge game - and yet again his bizarre experiment went horribly, horribly wrong. Eyebrows were raised with both Fernandinho and Rodri left on the bench, meaning City started the match without a holding midfielder. And it was a serious error of judgement, with Chelsea having the better of the vast majority of the game, with key City men like De Bruyne being pulled out of position all over the place... the Catalan only has himself to blame for tonight's latest bitter disappointment".

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Tuchel.Matthew Ashton - AMAGetty Images

'Olé': "Guardiola's plan backfired"

"With Havertz's goal, Chelsea beat Manchester City to win the Champions League. In a game played at an intense pace, Tuchel's team made history on a night to remember. Guardiola's plan to play without a striker didn't work out. Sterling and De Bruyne, created danger in dribs and drabs on the left wing but every time they put the ball into the box, there was no one there to receive it".

'Daily Mail': "Pep's starting XI, ridiculously reckless"

"Three times he has taken on Thomas Tuchel this season. Three times, twice in crucial games, he has been undone by the German. When they first met, Tuchel was tyhe eager apprentice in the relationship. Now he is the master.A fresh impetus for attacking football is what he brought to the game in 2008 when he took over at Barça and what de demonstrated almost to perfection ten years ago when he last won this trophy, eviscerating Manchesetr United at Wembley in 2011.. And attacking football is what killed him here, both his zealous pursuit of it and in the influence he has had on a whole generation of coaches. Starting neither Fernandinho nor Rodri seemed excessively injudicious even for a man so committed to aesthetics of attacking football. When playing against a team like Chelsea, built by Thomas Tuchel to counter at speed and exploit space, it verged on being ridiculously reckless".

Rodri y Guardiola.
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'BBC': "Guardiola's plan failed"

"Tuchel must take the greatest credit for restoring self-belief, confidence and organisation to Chelsea after Lampard's departure, especially by making the common sense moves of putting the combative, edgy Antonio Rudiger back into the heart of defence and putting Kante in the midfield position where he operates to such world-class game-changing effect.. What a contrast it was to the despair of Guardiola and Manchester City, who will leave Porto accompanied by bitter disappointment and regrets after a night in which they failed to produce the goods.. One of Guardiola's great qualities as a manager is his determination to fashion the beautiful game accompanied by attacking football - but maybe the in-built instincts got the better of him when he chose a line-up that raised eyebrows as soon as the teamsheets landed. No Rodri. No Fernandinho. No protection. Attack-minded players everywhere. Guardiola's plan failed and he will have to accept the criticism that will inevitably come his way.".

'El País': "Chelsea devour City"

"Another success from the German school of coaching. Three different German coaches have led their respective teams to glory in this competition for the last three seasons - Jürgen Klopp, Hansi Flick and now Thomas Tuchel. As audacious as ever, Guardiola threw down the guantlet -  even on such an historic day for City. Despite the occasion, Guardiola opted to approach the final in his own way. A defensive midfielder? No need for one... Rodri and Fernandinho on the bench. A striker? Not tonight - Agüero and Gabriel Jesús didn't start. Instead, a consortium of talent upon talent - De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva, Mahrez, Gündogan, Foden, Sterling... who collectively, produced nothing. All of them fell flat against a Chelsea side who were better organised, solid, hungry and direct".

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'The Guardian': "Guardiola discovers a new way of losing"

"For a while City just kind of fell apart. Suddenly there were spaces, channels opening up in the backlineThree times Chelsea were able to carve a way through, let down on each occasion by Timo Werner’s reverse-Terminator impression, the man who can’t be called off, who will never stop, but who also refuses to kill you. Werner really should have scored twice and set the day decisively one way. Throughout all this Pep was on his feet in full crazed modernist conductor guise, whirling and lunging, doing rapid-fire double-handed midge-swats, pointing at things only he could see – objects, planes, holes, possibilities. Could Guardiola not see what was happening in front of him? Did he feel his fate set, Birnam Wood already marching up the hill? Why, to put it more practically, didn’t he just stiffen up that midfield end allow this team to play as it has?".


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