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Pep aims dig at Mourinho ahead of Spurs-City tie

Guardiola aims dig at Mourinho ahead of highly-anticipated Spurs vs Man City showdown

November 21, 2020 By Ali M.
The Spaniard made sure to hit back at the Special One over remarks he made about Sterling's injury situation during the international break.

Pep Guardiola has hit back at Tottenham boss and long-term rival Jose Mourinho amid recent remarks made by the Portuguese boss and the injury situation regarding England international Raheem Sterling. This comes ahead of the highly-anticipated Premier League showdown between Spurs and Man City set to take place on Saturday.

The controversy stems from Gareth Southgate's handling of Sterling's fitness, having picked up an injury during the recent international break. The Citizens ace was thus not risked for the Three Lions' do-or-die clash with Belgium, which they lost 2-0, and he also sat out the clash with Iceland and is now fit for the trip to north London.

Jose took exception to this, hinting that Man City were handed preferential treatment in regards with their player, arguing that when Eric Dier endured similar circumstances, he returned to his club injured and was forced to miss two games. Speaking ahead of the weekend game, the Special One said: "Of course we all know Sterling is going to play for City against us.

"When Eric Dier left the national team injured in the past month, he didn't play two matches for Tottenham.

"He didn't play the Premier League match and the Europa League match. He needed a couple of weeks to recover. And Raheem is going to play. These are the little details that I think Gareth should explain to us all."

Mourinho continued with his outburst, adding: "Gareth, I read, supposedly told that some club managers put pressure on the players not to play for the national team.

"And because of that he feels sometimes the need to call club managers to cool down the emotions and control a difficult situation for him.

"I'd like him to say who. I'd like him to say which are the coaches who put pressure on the players not to play.

"And I would like him to say which are the coaches that he calls and speaks on the phone with them. He has the right, the power to call the players he wants.

"He wants to win matches, especially after a defeat the next match — even being a dead rubber — is an important match. I sympathize totally with that."

Pep did not shy away from responding to these comments from his long-time adversary. The Spaniard questioned Jose's expertize on matters regarding player fitness, joking whether the Portuguese tactician is a medical professional to assess Sterling's calf issue.

"Maybe Mourinho is a doctor, I don't know," Guardiola said, as per the Sun.

"He has to speak to the England national team doctor and the doctor for Manchester City."

The former Barcelona gaffer refused to be drawn into a war-of-words after the Special One suggested the Etihad Stadium men go down to ground to easily but we can expect an intense battle between the pair when they meet. The Citizens boss, having signed a new two-year extension, will be keen on beating the north London outfit. However, Mourinho will call upon in-form attacking duo Kane and Son to record a second consecutive win over Man City.

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