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Pep Guardiola joins bandwagon of coaches left alone to face angry fans over super league crises.

The manager of the Premier League leaders had to face a barrage of questions on the shock breakaway while his employers remained silent

Once again, it was left to Pep Guardiola.

Two days after Manchester City announced they would be among the 12 clubs to form the new Super League, there has been nothing but silence from the decision-makers at the Etihad Stadium.

The only official confirmation that City are even set to take part in the new breakaway competition was a  generic statement published on the club website, replete with quotes from Manchester United’s Joel Glazer and Florentino Perez of Real Madrid.

City didn’t even share the post through their social media channels.

Not a single person from the corridors of power – from chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak to Chief Executive Officer Ferran Soriano – has had the courage to come forward to explain to angry fans the reasons behind the decision.

So, Guardiola was left to face the media alone in Tuesday’s pre-game press conference for the Premier League meeting with Aston Villa.

That shouldn’t have come as a surprise. Guardiola had to defend the club when they were wrongly thrown out of the Champions League, and address the matter again when they were re-admitted after a successful Court of Arbitration (CAS) appeal.

The only difference this time was that the City boss had questions of his own, having been caught by surprise by the Super League news.

When asked by reporters when he had been informed of the decision by his employers, Guardiola replied: “A few hours before the statement was released. They told me they were going to release a statement and the statement is there now.

“But no one is speaking clearly about what [the Super League] is going to do or create, so we are still in this position [of uncertainty].”

As one of the most influential men in world football, what Guardiola thinks matters. But he is holding back on giving a full and frank appraisal of the Super League until someone actually explains the thinking behind the whole plan.

So, in a shorter-than-normal press conference, it was a theme to which he repeatedly returned.

“There are presidents or vice-presidents that can talk more clearly or exactly about what the idea is for the future and where football wants to go,” he said.

“That is why it is a little bit uncomfortable for [managers] because we don’t have all the information. Once we have all the information, I will give you my opinion.

“I would love the presidents and the vice-presidents for this committee to go all around the world and explain the reason they took that decision.

“I support my club, I know the people and I am part of the club, but also I have my own opinion. My opinion is that I would love to be clear and have all the information.”

Guardiola, though, clearly has concerns, chief among them the potential lack of competition, with 15 teams guaranteed to take part in the Super League annually, meaning there is no threat of relegation for Europe’s elite.

“It is not a sport where the relation between effort and success, effort and reward, does not exist,” he added.

“It is not a sport where success is already guaranteed, and it is not a sport when it doesn’t matter if you lose.

“That’s why I said many times, I want the best competition, the strongest competition possible, especially in the Premier League.


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