Pep Guardiola will take his Man City side to Anfield on Sunday and has reflected on the previous journeys that have seen the team bus attacked by fans but believes those issues are in the past
Pep Guardiola says he trusts Merseyside police will protect Manchester City as they head to Anfield this afternoon.
The Catalan is convinced the authorities will afford them safe passage to the stadium as they travel to this weekend’s most high-profile fixture.
Three years ago, Manchester City ’s coach was attacked ahead of a Champions League quarter-final.
Bottles and flares were thrown as the bus crawled through packed streets ahead of a game that Liverpool won 3-0.
Footage from inside the team bus showed the effect it had on Manchester City’s players – with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp labelling those involved as ‘idiots’ after the final whistle.
Two visits since then have passed without incident – one was made without fans – but Real Madrid ’s bus similarly came under fire ahead of a Champions League quarter-final just six months ago.
And that has raised the spectre of similar problems befalling the reigning champions ahead of what has become a showpiece occasion in English football.
However, Guardiola says he not only backs Merseyside police but also the people of the city to recognise the harrowing ordeal he went through.
Asked about security, Manchester City’s boss said: ‘Hopefully, they have sorted it. I hope so.
“I wish it would never happen again – you cannot imagine how bad it was.
“I’m pretty sure the Liverpool police – and the people – understand the situation. I just hope it never happens again.”
Guardiola has praised his counterpart ahead of Sunday’s game, insisting he has forced him to improve throughout his career.
“Jurgen Klopp’s teams helped me to be a better manager,” he said.
“He put me at another level, to think about it, to prove myself, to be a better manager. That is the reason why I am still in this business.
“The last four years, all the time, we were both there. It’s the biggest compliment that both clubs were there.
“But in the Premier League there are not just one or two, there are many teams who can fight for the league.”