Pep Guardiola wants to emulate the ‘incredibly long career’ of West Ham boss David Moyes

The two managers meet this weekend as the Hammers face the league leaders

Andy Hampson
Friday 26 February 2021 19:52
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Pep Guardiola has spoken of his admiration for David Moyes as he prepares to face the experienced West Ham manager this weekend.

Manchester City boss Guardiola has been impressed by the Hammers’ transformation under Moyes since the Scot returned to the club for a second spell midway through last season. The London club sit fourth in the Premier League ahead of Saturday’s trip to the Etihad Stadium having lost just once in their last 11 games.

Guardiola also envies Moyes’ longevity with the 57-year-old former Everton and Manchester United boss having been in management since 1998.

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The Spaniard said: “They are in the Champions League position. That is not just a good run for one month, it’s over many months, so that means they are strong.

“David Moyes - I admire this type of person, like Roy Hodgson. They have had incredibly long careers. I would love to have their long careers for many years and have this passion to be manager and to do the job.

“The season speaks for itself. The way he understands football, he does it perfectly.

“He has a lot of experience. I dream of one day arriving in this position, where everything is calm. They live like a Buddha life - in good and bad moments they are calm.

“He always takes care of me. I cannot forget my first game in the Premier League was against Sunderland. He was the manager there and he was so kind, he gave me some advice about the Premier League.

“It’s a real tough game because all the big clubs have suffered against them and they are a good team.”

Asked what that advice was, Guardiola said: “Try to buy the best wine possible to invite the manager when you win the game!”

Wine was a common theme in Guardiola’s pre-match press conference, mentioning it again as he went on to discuss striker Gabriel Jesus’ lack of goals this season.

The Brazilian, who has had form and fitness issues, has netted just nine times this term.

He was on target in the Champions League win over Borussia Monchengladbach on Wednesday but Guardiola later said his team were not clinical enough in that game.

Guardiola is confident the 23-year-old will go on to be a huge success.

He said: “He is so generous, he is so lovely, and he always thinks for the team and not himself. If he was more egotistical he would have scored many more goals.

“When you see what he produces I don’t have anything to say, completely the opposite. He is still young and he will improve.

“I like what he is - he just needs to be more calm in front of goal. He is so young and he will learn it. He will get it through the years, like a good wine.”

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City have won their last 19 matches in all competitions, widely considered to be a record for an English top-flight side.

This record, however, does not take into account matches settled by penalty shoot-outs. If penalties are taken into account for such statistics, City have actually already posted a longer winning run - the 20 victories in succession they chalked up in the 2017-18 season.

It is that mark that is now in range as quadruple-chasing City host the Hammers - although Guardiola claims he is not counting.

He said: “The challenge is not to do 20 or 21, the challenge is to beat West Ham. This is the only challenge that we have. The results and the run are a consequence of what we have to do day by day.”

PA

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