Pep Guardiola Insists That Defensive Responsibility Lies With Every Man City Player

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola says his entire team are responsible for their defensive performance in the Champions League game against Atalanta on Tuesday.

Despite the club’s issues at the back this season, Guardiola claims that the key to conceding fewer goals is down to the performance of all 11 players, rather than just the back four.

- Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages
Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages

Centre-backs John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi are set to play in the Champions League fixture on Tuesday night amid injury concerns. 

However, the Spaniard told Sky Sports that Man City will need to defend from the front better than they have in recent games.

"We are good enough, we are strong enough, I think we believe in that. When you play these kind of games and believe in that 'OK, we are going to defend well because we are good'” Guardiola said.

"Last game [against Palace] shows when you play good you defend less. When you don't play good you concede a lot. It's not about having two players who are going to defend for the 11 players.

- PAUL ELLIS/GettyImages
PAUL ELLIS/GettyImages

"What happens is when we make an incredible fluid game from the build-up, we concede few. When our build-up is wrong, you make a mistake in the first pass.

"Against Wolves our build-up was not in our mind, we didn't train it. It was my mistake. That happened and we concede a lot - that's why it's related. 

"It's not about we defend well and after it's enough - no. When you play good in some departments, pressing high is good and intense, we concede really few."

- PAUL ELLIS/GettyImages
PAUL ELLIS/GettyImages

Man City have started their Champions League campaign well with comfortable wins against both Shakhtar Donetsk and Dinamo Zagreb, but the Man City boss admits he is unsure if his team can go all the way.

“We are going to try but I don't know who is going to win” he insists. “If we win I'll be happy - if we do not win we will try again next season.”


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