Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has declared that his team will be on the front foot when they visit Manchester United in the derby on Saturday.
“I want to control the game,” Guardiola said during Friday’s press conference.
“We know how we are going to play tomorrow – and we know we’re going to play a real good team.
“It depends on the way we play. I believe now and until the last day of my career that you have to play good to win the game.
“I want to attack, control the game, concede a few counter attacks – but play good.
“I saw the official games United have played and in every game they’ve played better than in the one before. Like us.
“We’ll try to continue the things we did good and correct and improve the other things. We played have good in some moments.”
When Guardiola was asked if he would share a glass of wine with United boss Jose Mourinho, a bitter rival, after the game, the City coach said:
“I’ll accept if he invites me. Jose and I met two or three weeks ago at a Premier League meeting and we spoke fluently.
“I said it many times – I have a lot of respect for Jose Mourinho, I always try to learn from all of my colleagues – it’s the same with him. The rivalry is more from the media and we can’t control that.
“He was my coach, my assistant coach with Sir Bobby Robson. OK, the last period at Barcelona and Real Madrid was not easy for both of us but we met each other two, three weeks ago at the manager’s Premier League meeting. We spoke fluently with Ronald Koeman and Tony Pulis. It was correct, so that’s all.”
Guardiola revealed that new goalkeeper Claudio Bravo is “fit and ready” and that new signing Leroy Sane is “in terms of his condition, the best player”.
Despite Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s open dislike for Guardiola, the City boss had only good words about the United striker.
Pep said: “Zlatan, I have a lot of respect for what he has done in his career. What he did everywhere is amazing. He is one of the best players. Some players need time to understand the league but the big players don’t.”