Guardiola sticking to his guns as early euphoria fades at City

Fri Oct 21, 2016 1:00pm EDT
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By Martyn Herman

LONDON (Reuters) - Pep Guardiola enjoyed a dazzling start to his reign as Manchester City manager, so much so that after six successive Premier League wins some were suggesting the only real fight this season would be for runners-up spot.

A few weeks later his side are still top of the table but the early euphoria has been replaced by the cold chill of reality as the dark winter months loom.

First there was a 3-3 draw at Celtic in the Champions League and a few days later the wheels came off City's bandwagon when they were outplayed in a 2-0 defeat at Tottenham Hotspur.

Last week's 1-1 home draw with Everton was then followed by a 4-0 hammering at Guardiola's old club Barcelona.

City's start to the season now looks slightly underwhelming, although Guardiola gave a passionate defense of his methods on Friday when it was suggested he may change tack.

They will seek to end a four-match winless run when they host Southampton on Sunday, but even if they lose Guardiola said he will not be adapting the philosophy that has served him so well throughout his career.

"I think about that," he told reporters. "But after that the solution is not better than I believe. So I cannot. Do you know why as well?

"Because in seven years I won 21 titles. I'm sorry, but I won 21 titles in seven years. So it's three titles per year, playing in that way."   Continued...

Football Soccer - FC Barcelona v Manchester City - UEFA Champions League Group Stage - Group C - The Nou Camp, Barcelona, Spain - 19/10/16
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola 
Action Images via Reuters / John Sibley