Manchester City are preparing for a big game in the Champions League against Real Madrid this week and will want to finally end years of under-achievement in this competition.
It’s a big game for Pep Guardiola as well – a man rightly lauded as one of the greatest managers of his generation, but one who has not won the Champions League since all the way back in 2011.
Since Guardiola’s two victories in three years with Barcelona, he has continued to work with many of the best players in the world at Bayern Munich and Man City, so perhaps it’s not too harsh to say he should have come a little closer to lifting the European Cup again since then.
A piece in The Athletic has explored Guardiola’s issues in this competition, including the claim that he often overthinks things in the big games in the Champions League.
It’s clear not everyone agrees with this, with the report quoting some of his former players and with everyone who’s worked with him seeming to speak very highly of his preparation for matches.
Still, The Athletic do quote one unnamed City player as admitting he often doesn’t understand everything that’s been asked of him, and that it seems easier for Guardiola to explain his complex ideas to fellow Spanish speakers.
It will be interesting to see how much we see of that communication struggle when City take on Real at the Bernabeu on Wednesday night.