Pep building a City to be reckoned with: Kompany

LONDON • Manchester City are set to end this season trophy-less and by manager Pep Guardiola's standards, it is a far cry from his first seasons in charge of his previous clubs Barcelona and Bayern Munich - where he won a treble and a double respectively.

However, the Spaniard has the backing of his captain Vincent Kompany, who has claimed that City are building "something special" under the 46-year-old.

"I think we've got a manager who has come in with a very specific vision of how he wants the game to be played," Kompany told British media yesterday.

"We have a team that will try everything to implement that. On certain areas we've been doing extremely well and no result or ranking will ever be able to translate that properly. We've dominated games, been organised, tried to play in a certain way that I always think is the beginning of something better, something special.

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"But obviously we've lacked in key moments and everyone has to take responsibility for that. As long as we recognise that and try to improve on it, then we're still set up for something good. There's a lot still to come beyond this year."

City lie third in the Premier League table before their visit to Watford on the final day of the season tomorrow. Guardiola's side are two points ahead of fourth-placed Liverpool (73) and three ahead of fifth-placed Arsenal.

Barring an upset at Vicarage Road, City are the favourites to clinch one of the two remaining Champions League berths along with champions Chelsea and runners-up Tottenham.

Kompany added that the Premier League has been extra competitive this season and City have in fact done well, considering how Arsenal and sixth-placed Manchester United have struggled to secure a spot in Europe's elite club competition.

"It does say a lot about the Premier League that two top teams will miss out on the top four," the Belgian said. "But it's exciting. We'd have preferred to be tighter to first place perhaps, but I'm sure eventually that will be the case.

"In this instance we're fighting for a Champions League place and it's down to details."

WATFORD V MAN CITY

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 20, 2017, with the headline 'Pep building a City to be reckoned with: Kompany'. Print Edition | Subscribe