‘He has to stop saying it!’ – Kompany begs Pep to cool Manchester City talk
Vincent Kompany has asked Pep Guardiola to stop insisting he will one day take over as Manchester City manager.
Kompany will be in the opposing dugout at the Etihad Stadium for the first time on Saturday when his Championship-topping Burnley side face the Premier League champions in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, but City boss Guardiola has tipped the Belgian to succeed him in the future.
Shortly after the FA Cup draw paired the two clubs at the start of the month, Guardiola said it was Kompany’s “destiny” to manage City, and he repeated that view on Friday, saying that after studying Burnley more closely he was “more convinced than ever” it would happen.
“He has got to stop saying it!” Kompany said with a laugh. “I am a Championship manager, I don’t know what you want from me!
“I think he should stay for another 10 years at Manchester City first and foremost. Secondly, City are competing to win the Champions League, we are competing to win the Championship so I don’t think those kind of conversations make sense.
“They need to have the best manager in the world. I understand the question comes because I have an affiliation with the club but I want to be extremely respectful to the club I manage as well, that’s why I don’t want to answer to any speculation, and that’s not speculation because it is far-fetched.
“This club to me means everything. I want this club to get better.”
Kompany has certainly drawn on what he learnt under Guardiola in his own coaching, but admitted much of it was only so useful in the very different environment of the Championship.
“Pep has always remained very communicative with ex-players who have gone to the other side of the game,” he said.
“He has helped many former players after he has coached them. I am no different but I went into the Championship.
“I will still speak to him and have a glass of red wine after the game but my problems in the Championship, I have to deal with balls into the channels and headers and throw-ins, I’m not saying its a different sport but you have to find your own solutions in the Championship.
“The people I have spoken to are guys like Steve Cooper at Nottingham Forest, Scott Parker from when he was at Bournemouth, guys that have got promoted from the Championship.”
Kompany has cut off lines of communication with his friends and former team-mates in the City dressing room this week, and spent Tuesday evening reviewing video clips of midweek opponents Hull rather than taking in City’s 7-0 rout of Leipzig in the Champions League.
But the connections remain deep after Kompany’s 11-year stint at the club, even if he doubts that his inside knowledge of how Guardiola and his team operate will be all that much help on Saturday evening.
“The Championship teams in the past who have gone to the Etihad, you could give them the team and the tactics and they would still have the toughest challenge they have ever encountered,” he said. “My only goal is to do as well as we can.”
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