De Bruyne explains why Guardiola stopped Man City’s derby preparations after just 10 minutes

Manchester United’s derby defeat to Manchester City last week was damning and the huge gap in quality between the two sides was more obvious than ever. Last season, United finished 12 points behind their noisy neighbours but instead of closing the gap, it seems to be widening this year.

Pep Guardiola’s side were superior from the first minute and after taking an early lead, they dominated proceedings and comfortably saw the game out to win at Old Trafford in the Premier League for the first time since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first derby as manager in 2019.

Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne has now admitted that Guardiola did not know how to prepare his side for last weekend’s derby, which resulted in the Spanish manager ending preparations just 10 minutes into a training session.

“The day before a game we usually train tactically, based on how the opponent play,” De Bruyne told the MidMid Podcast, via the Manchester Evening News.

“Before United, Pep said: ‘We don’t know how they are going to play. We shall see’. And we stopped training after 10 minutes or so.

“Often Pep knows how the opponent is going to play. This time he didn’t know, so he didn’t know what to do. We have done what we always do, but he didn’t know beforehand if they would play with 5 at the back. With four. A diamond in the middle. With 3 upfront.”

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SN’s verdict on De Bruyne’s comments and how it reflects on Solskjaer…
It might be easy to come to the conclusion that De Bruyne’s admission points towards Guardiola’s undeniable superiority to Solskjaer when it comes to management but the facts suggest otherwise.

The narrative on show is that Solskjaer’s side were without a prayer even before a ball was kicked, owing to Guardiola’s sensational planning with his 10-minute training session. The only sticking point is that since Solskjaer took permanent charge of United in 2019, he has won more Premier League derbies against Guardiola than Guardiola has against Solskjaer.

De Bruyne’s comments are being used to push another lazy narrative and Solskjaer, who is already under increasing pressure, will be the last to pay any attention to it.

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