Although Manchester City are currently on a four-game winning streak across all competitions, all is not well at the club. The manager of the club is not happy with the comments made by the general secretary of City's official supporters' club, Kevin Parker, against him which has really angered Pep Guardiola. Things became so heated that Man City's manager has now come out and suggested that he could resign from his position if fans have any problem with him.
It all started after Manchester City's thrilling 6-3 win over RB Leipzig in their UCL 2021-22 season opener at Etihad Stadium this week. As many as 38,062 fans attended the match in the stadium which has a capacity of 55,000. After the contest, Pep Guardiola had urged fans to come to City's next game on Saturday, when they welcome Southampton.
"We will need the people next Saturday, please, because we will be tired. I invite all our people to come next Saturday, 3pm, and watch the game," Guardiola had said after the match.
I think Pep should stick to coaching: Kevin Parker
Pep's request did not go down well with the general secretary of City's official supporters' club, Kevin Parker, who termed the comments as surprising. He said, "I'm not sure what that's got to do with him. He doesn't understand the difficulties that some people might have getting to a game at the Etihad on a Wednesday evening at 8pm. They've got kids to think of, they might not be able to afford it, [and] there are still some Covid issues about. I don't see why he comments on it."
Parker went on to say that although Pep is absolutely the best coach in the world but he should maybe stick to that. "It just takes the edge off what was a good night. People are talking more about Pep's comments than a fantastic game. To question the support, which is effectively what he is doing, is disappointing and uncalled for," Parker added.
I am not going to apologise for what I said: Guardiola
And now, Pep Guardiola has responded to Parker's comments clarifying the fact that he is not going to apologise for what he said. He said, "What I said was we need the support. It doesn't matter how many people come but I invite them to come and enjoy the game because we need the support."
"Always I've said, guys if you want to join us I will be incredibly happy, because I know how difficult it will be. I prefer to be with my people than without my people. But if they don't come for any reason it's perfect. I never say 'Why didn't you come?'. Mr Parker should review the comments I've done the day after, but I will not apologise to him," Guardiola added.
Pep gives clarification on his comments about fans
The 50-year-old also went on to say that if he is a problem with his fans, he will step aside. Reflecting on his comments to invite fans, he said, "I like to play at the stadium with my fans. It was a tough game against Leipzig. I was exhausted, I saw my team in the locker room how difficult it was, and in that moment I was thinking it's Southampton in three days, and I said come to join us, come to do it together, come to beat the team of Ralph [Hasenhuttl] because I know how difficult it will be."
It will be interesting to see how many fans turn up at Etihad on Saturday (September 18) when Manchester City welcome Southampton. The match kicks off at IST 7:30 PM onwards.