Pep Guardiola brands Roberto De Zerbi as ‘one of the most INFLUENTIAL managers in the last 20 years’
Pep Guardiola brands Roberto De Zerbi ‘one of the most INFLUENTIAL managers in the last 20 years’ after launching Brighton into Europe – and says the in-form Seagulls are like a ‘unique Michelin star restaurant’
Pep Guardiola has described Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi as ‘one of the most influential managers in the last 20 years’.
The Manchester City manager takes his newly-crowned champions to the Amex Stadium on Wednesday to face De Zerbi’s over-achieving Seagulls, who he said are ‘the best in the world’ at one aspect of the game.
City picked up their fifth Premier League title in six years at the weekend and now have league games against Brighton and Brentford ahead of an FA Cup final against Manchester United and the Champions League final clash with Inter Milan.
But Guardiola paid tribute to the Brighton manager, who has taken his team into European football for the first time.
They are already assured of Europa League football, and the highest league placing in their history, and Guardiola paid tribute to the job the Italian has done on the south coast.
Roberto De Zerbi has marshalled Brighton to a historic sixth-place finish in the Premier League
Pep Guardiola described De Zerbi as ‘one of the most influential managers in the last 20 years’
‘Congratulations for this incredible achievement in the Europa League,’ said the City boss.
‘I think Roberto is one of the most influential managers in the last 20 years.
‘There is no team playing the way they play – unique. I had the feeling he would have an impact and it would be great – but I didn’t expect them to do it in this short space of time.
‘Twenty or 25 chances, they monopolise the ball in a way it hasn’t been for a long time, a keeper like a holding midfielder, if you don’t play at a high level he can do whatever he wants against you.
Newly-crowned Manchester City will take on the in-form Seagulls at the Amex on Wednesday
‘They deserve the success, and are a team I try to learn from. (They are like a) Michelin star restaurant, unique.
‘In Catalonia the best cook changed the cuisine, and Brighton are playing with something special and it’s an incredible challenge.’
Asked what they do that makes them so special, Guardiola said: ‘(The) time to take decisions. Brighton are the masters of when to pass to the free men – they are the best at that in the world.
‘The right tempo and the free men. How aggressive they are with the ball is the same as (it was under previous manager Graham) Potter, and the way they do the process and use the keeper, when to pass the ball, they are the best.’