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SOCCER

Guardiola dodges talk of City offer for Haaland

The Manchester City manager didn’t want to talk about a reported mega-offer for Haaland: “I’ve got enough on my plate right now”.

Update:
Manchester City's Spanish manager Pep Guardiola reacts during the English FA Cup semi-final football match between Liverpool and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in north west London on April 16, 2022. - - NOT FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING USE / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP) / NOT FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING USE / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
GLYN KIRKGetty

The Daily Mail reported on Monday that Manchester City have reached an agreement with Erling Haaland . According to the English newspaper, the Norwegian will earn 600,000 euros a week at the Etihad, effectively becoming the best-paid player in the Premier League. Ahead of Wednesday’s league meeting with Brighton, Pep Guardiola attended the media but he was in no mood to answer questions about the Borussia Dortmund star. “No answer to your question,” the City manager replied with a shake of the head which quizzed about Haaland’s arrival. “I have another concern and business in my head right now to think what is going to happen in this club next season. We are playing without a good striker this season. I don’t know what is going to happen in the future. It’s next season, so you know, I’m not going to talk. For a long time, for many years, I never talk about transfer windows especially when we are playing for incredible things still, this season”.

With Liverpool going head-to-head with Manchester United at Anfield later this evening - ans with the possibility of temporarily knocking City off top spot to become overnight leaders, Guardiola says he already has enough to keep him occupied, although he admitted he will be tuning in to follow that game “as a fan”. City top the Premier League on 74 points, with Liverpool just one point behind and seven games left to play.

The Brighton game: “They don’t need to win at Arsenal and Spurs to show they are a good side. Every time we play against Brighton, from Graham Potter, I have a lot of admiration for them, how they play, the way they play, their results. A good test for us”.

Complaints by some fans about the line-up for the FA Cup semi-final, any regrets? “No. I understand the opinions of the fans - of course! They have all my respect and credit to give their opinion. My team selection was for many reasons. They were ready. Like Kyle was not ready, Kevin was not ready, Gündogan was not ready... So I understand everything, I understand your question, but I was in the hotel after the game against Atlético Madrid, in the hotel in London I spoke with my staff, especially with my doctors, with my physios and I listened to what they told me. Afterwards, we took a decision. I have a lot of info that you don’t have! And after that, I make a decision. Football is not about physicality - it’s about momentum, how you are mentally. In any moment, sometimes you are better, sometimes you’re not and that’s the reason”.

Liverpool–Manchester United at Anfield: “I’ll watch the game as a fan. I’ll be at home and I’ll have time so of course I want to watch it. As for the result, I would United to take points, what is going to change if we don’t do our job in the next game? I’ll watch it as a fan and maybe I can learn something about both teams and that’s all”.

What excites you most about the title race? “The challenge is the same as it has been over the past two or three weeks. It’s the same, we are one point ahead and we are going to play every game as though it was a final - to give ourselves the opportunity to play another one. We’re going to fight to the end. We’ll try to play well and get results. I like to play the semi-finals of the FA Cup or the Champions League, it’s amazing what we are doing. Considering the problems we had for many parts of the season, I’m very satisfied. We have to remember what we are as a team, and our strong points and go for it”.

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