City have prepared for Chelsea like Southampton: Guardiola


Pep Guardiola

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola said the team has prepared to battle Chelsea at Stamford Bridge today like they did Southampton last week, although he admitted a number of players are still short of full fitness.

“We prepare the game like we prepare Southampton and like before in the previous games,” he said at a press conference on Friday.

“Try to read what they are and what we have done in recent games against Chelsea under Tuchel. Every game is a new challenge, a new opportunity to learn, improve and do better.

“It’s not a final like in the FA Cup and the Premier League was already done. Of, course the Champions League is massive. We try to learn.

“This is a new competition. It’s one more game. We prepare the game like the strong points we have and see what we can do to be better.

“That’s the mindset we have. It will be the same against Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool before the international break.”

City have lost previous three meetings with the West Londoners, including the agonising defeat in last season’s Champions League final.

Guardiola hopes learning from that experience can help him achieve a better outcome on Saturday, though he admits he will not be altering his approach due to Chelsea’s recent success in this fixture.

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He also spoke on the injured players.

“We still have a few injuries,” he said at his pre-match press conference.

“Some of them came back a little bit in training and today(Friday) we will decide if they are ready to play or not.

“Not all of them [are in contention]. Some of them come back to training today, but we need to see how they react and tomorrow(today) we will see.”

Chelsea will also be affected by injury, with Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount ruled out, though Thomas Tuchel has confirmed goalkeeper Eduoard Mendy is fit again and will start.

Chelsea will parade a 2-5-3-1 formation, while Guardiola is deploying a 3-3-4-1 formation.

The match kicks off at 12.30 p.m.