Ahead of a crucial clash at home to Leicester City in the Premier League, Manchester City boss, Pep Guardiola, has admitted that Luis Enrique’s Barcelona and this current Liverpool side managed by Jurgen Klopp are the best two teams he has ever faced.
Guardiola is locked in a thrilling title race with Klopp in the Premier League, with Man. City needing a win on Monday night against Leicester, managed by former Liverpool boss, Brendan Rodgers, in order to regain top spot in the Premier League going into the final day of the season.
At the moment, Guardiola’s men have 92 points from 36 matches played while Klopp’s men, who needed a Divock Origi header in the 86th minute to overcome Newcastle United on Saturday, have 94 points from 37 games.
The keen contest for the league title led Guardiola to heap high praise on his rival’s team. “In my career as a manager, I played against incredible sides. There are two that were ‘wow’. One is Barcelona with Luis Enrique, with Neymar, (Lionel) Messi and (Luis) Suarez in front. The other is this Liverpool.”
He added: “It’s not easy, honestly… I think they’re the best two sides I’ve faced as a manager. That’s why being here, with it in our hands, fighting against them until the end. One of the biggest achievements.”
Guardiola went on to say just being in the mix for the title yet again after the record 100-point haul of last season brings great satisfaction to him. “Arriving at this stage, two games left with 92 points, after 100 points last season… being there, that is the most satisfaction I’ve had as a manager,” he said.
According to the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss, he did not expect his team to have won as many points in the league as they have at the moment as the tendency is for such a team to become relaxed in their approach after such an achievement.
“I didn’t expect to get the points we have this season so far after what we did last season,” said Guardiola. “Normally, the tendency for human beings is to relax a little bit. But the reason we were seven behind at that moment is because Liverpool were unstoppable.”
He added: “The personality is when it goes wrong and how they react in bad moments, how they stand up in the game and after a big defeat. In two seasons, we did it. We react well to knockouts in our faces.”
Do you agree with Guardiola’s choice for best teams he has ever faced? Tell us your views on this.