Pep Guardiola reacts to Mauricio Pochettino criticism over 'Harry Kane team' comments


In the aftermath of Man City's 1-0 over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Pep Guardiola made some comments about Tottenham that unsurprisingly didn't go down well.

When assessing the strength of City's title rivals, the former Barcelona boss said: "We're in September. Chelsea won 13 games in a row last season. We have [Manchester] United and the Harry Kane team, who scores every game two or three goals."

The Harry Kane team. It's no wonder that comment made headlines.

Despite the fact that only Lionel Messi has scored more goals than Kane in 2017 and the England international has 11 goals in nine games so far this season, Spurs have been an impressive unit under Mauricio Pochettino.

Without the supporting cast, it's very unlikely Kane would have reached the stardom he currently enjoys.

When asked about Guardiola's comments, the Spurs boss was not a happy man.

"I know Pep very well and when he is excited, after an amazing victory against Chelsea, sometimes he struggles to keep his position and be a gentleman," Pochettino said.

"The situation didn't affect me but, in reality, it was very disrespectful for many people."

Just like Pochettino didn't want to take what Guardiola said lying down, the CIty boss was not prepared to be called disrespectful either.

Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League

"I'm disrespectful?" he responded, before looking down at his desk and shaking his head.

"I think Mauricio, for the times we've met each other and the times I spoke with him… maybe my English is not quite well.

"I never was disrespectful for my colleague in the press conference. Never.

"When I said 'Harry Kane's team' it was because of the fact Harry Kane was scoring a lot of goals. I know very well that Tottenham is not Harry Kane alone."

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Guardiola went on to claim that he was a huge fan of the way Spurs played last season, especially since they took four points off of his Citizens.

"I think last season, the guy who appreciated the way they play the most was me," he said. "When he lost against Chelsea in the [FA Cup] semi-final, I said it was incredible because Chelsea shot on target four times and scored four goals. Always I said Tottenham was one of the best teams.

"So I am really disappointed if he said that. I was never disrespectful in this period here about my colleagues.

It may indeed have been a misunderstanding, but it's hard to see how he wasn't claiming Spurs are a one-man team at the moment - even if he meant that as a compliment to Spurs.


Man City won't actually face Spurs until December 16 at the Etihad Stadium, so there is plenty of time for the war of words to cool off.

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