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Pep Guardiola: 'I have a plan for Manchester United, Inter Milan finals'

Guardiola: 'I have a plan for Man United, Inter finals'
© Reuters
Pep Guardiola reveals he has a "plan" regarding his Manchester City team selection ahead of finals against Manchester United and Inter Milan in the FA Cup and Champions League respectively next month.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has revealed that he has a "plan" regarding his team selection ahead of finals against Manchester United and Inter Milan in the FA Cup and Champions League respectively next month.

After securing their third successive Premier League title last Saturday courtesy of Arsenal's 1-0 loss at Nottingham Forest, Guardiola has since made several changes to his starting lineup in games against Chelsea and Brighton & Hove Albion.

The Catalan boss made nine changes to his City side for a 1-0 win over the West Londoners on Sunday, before making six switches to the team that played out a 1-1 draw with the Seagulls on Wednesday.

After facing Brentford in their final Premier League fixture on Sunday, the Citizens will begin preparations for their Wembley Stadium showdown with rivals Man United on June 3, before travelling to Istanbul for the Champions League final against Inter seven days later.

Ahead of two of the biggest fixtures in the club's history, Guardiola has admitted that he has already drawn up a plan for how he could set up his side against both Man United and Inter, although his focus has been primarily on the clash with Erik ten Hag's team.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola pictured after the match with Manchester City's Ilkay Gundogan on May 24, 2023© Reuters

The Red Devils secured Champions League qualification on Thursday night courtesy of a 4-1 home victory over Chelsea, and Guardiola was left "impressed" with their performance after watching the match.

"After seeing United yesterday, I am really impressed," Guardiola said at a press conference on Friday. "I would be careful anyway (on team selection) but after yesterday and the games recently, we are going to prepare the best we can.

"I have a plan for United and Inter. You have to prepare differently. I have to see how many players I have, if they are fit."

Asked for his thoughts on Inter, who beat Fiorentina 2-1 to win the Coppa Italia on Wednesday, Guardiola added: "I would say I saw a little bit (of Inter) last week, but not this week. I'm more focused on United.

"I saw the game against Chelsea and I started to review what they have done. To prepare that game, and see which players we have at our disposal."

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola celebrates their first goal scored on May 17, 2023© Reuters

Guardiola believes that his Man City players will benefit in their quest to win the treble if they can relax and disconnect as much as possible from football for a few days after the clash with Brentford.

"From my experience the best way to play finals, important ones, is to be as disconnected as much as possible," said the 52-year-old. "I have to prepare for the final and watch videos, but I think we have to play like a regular Premier League game to be nearer our best level.

"We have played the last month one game a week with two days off. We needed to disconnect, physios, doctors, and chefs. They are here 10 hours a day to work with the players and help recover from this stressful period.

"That's why you have to go with your families, play golf and do what you want. Quality time to prepare for the finals. Train a few times, but just do exactly what we need arrive in the best position.

"I'll go home with my family. I don't forget, but with the players here I demand them to be ready."

Man City, who have some doubtful players for Sunday's trip to Brentford, have put together an impressive 25-game unbeaten run across all competitions and last tasted defeat in February when they lost 1-0 at Tottenham Hotspur.

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