Pep Guardiola's got a point to prove at Manchester City

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No one can argue that Pep Guardiola has an incredible record at managerial level. Of the four seasons managing Barcelona and three at the helm of Bayern Munich, he has gained a vast medal collection from some of the greatest competitions in European football.  

In fact, with the exception of the German Super Cup, he has won everything he could have possibly won, adding another Bundesliga title and possibly another DFB-Pokal this season.

So, what can possibly go wrong at Manchester City? If Pep Guardiola has such a phenomenal record at the very top level that must surely mean City are moving onwards and upwards?


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Perhaps so, but this rise to European prominence that the owners so desperately desire could take a bit longer than they anticipate.

Taking the reigns at Manchester City is like no other challenge Guardiola has experienced. When he was appointed Barcelona manager, they were arguably the best team in the world. When he was appointed at Bayern Munich, they were arguably the best team in the world. Are Manchester City arguably the best team in the world? There's no argument required, it's just a solid no.

Although City have the financial resources to compete with the best clubs in Europe, that doesn't mean they can just buy their way to a Champions League trophy.

The squad doesn't need a massive overhaul of players, just a few shrewd investments to push them to the top. This is not beyond Guardiola, he's very smart in the transfer market and will no doubt have already identified the areas in the team he wishes to improve alongside director of football, Txiki Begiristain.

Competitive Nature of the Premier League

His greatest obstacle however, is the English Premier League. Why have English clubs fallen off the pace in European competition in the last few years? The incredibly competitive nature of the Premier League means they cannot afford to take a league game lightly. The English teams will suffer in the Champions League because they would have given their all at the weekend to grind out a 2-2 draw against a mid-table team.

Particularly with La Liga, Guardiola will be used to taking the tempo down a notch in the league games either side of an important Champions League tie. He has to understand, and fast, that this league is the most competitive league in the world.

Leicester City's recent triumph just goes to show it really is anyone's to win. There is not going to be a runaway favourite for next season. There's not going to be a runaway top four, five, six or seven. For Guardiola, to even finish in the top four next season should be considered success as there is simply not enough room for all of the teams who feel they are capable of winning the league.

This could be a big shock to the system for a manager who is used to scrapping out with one or two other teams for the title, thrashing some sub-standard teams along the way.

Fixture Congestion

The fixture congestion of English football is always a huge shock to new managers too. With two domestic cup competitions, one of which imposes replays if the result is a draw, and no winter break, the squad can become fatigued very quickly.

If the owners are wise enough, they can back Guardiola for the long term, allow him to adapt to English football and leave him time to build a legacy at the Etihad Stadium.

The pressure that the Spaniard is under is immense though, they will want results fast and their impatience has shown in the past after disposing of two Premier League winning managers already.

Expectations are sky high in the blue half of Manchester, and add to that the enormity of the stress levels for any Premier League boss, it will be interesting to see if Guardiola still looks the suave, fresh faced manager he is now at the end of his three year deal, if he get's that far.

How will Pep Guardiola cope in the Premier League? Have YOUR say in the comment section below!

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Vincent Kompany
Premier League
David Silva
Manchester City
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