The former Barça boss was officially unveiled over the weekend, but what are the big issues facing him at the Etihad Stadium? FFT's Andrew Murray assesses…
Pep Guardiola looked relaxed as he strolled into work on Monday morning ready for his first day at the new office. Having been introduced at Manchester City's Cityzens event over the weekend, he was immediately assailed by Noel Gallagher, there to stuff a microphone into his face, as City players of old shook his hand and the assorted entourage grabbed a quick selfie with him.
When @NoelGallagher met Pep: In pictures
— Manchester City (@ManCity) 4 July 2016
Amid the trumpeting and constant fanfare (#itbegins), Pep talked a good game trading Citizens banter with crowd-pleasing training ground anecdotes. Now things get serious as Guardiola takes charge of a club desperate to see a return on their exorbitant investments. Here we run through the size of the task at hand…
Talk of Yaya Toure leaving Manchester City is nothing new, ever since his 31st birthday celebrations two years ago were irrevocably marred by a perfunctorily tweeted greeting, below-average cake and the lack of Bugatti Veyron entirely. It’d never happen to Roberto Carlos. Just saying.
Toure is still capable of moments of brilliance – he takes a mean free-kick and his left-footed curler against Dynamo Kyiv in the Champions League last 16 prove that – but it’s hard to shake the feeling that the 33-year-old’s best years are behind him
Toure is still capable of moments of brilliance – he takes a mean free-kick, and his left-footed curler against Dynamo Kiev in the Champions League last 16 proved that – but it’s hard to shake the feeling that the 33-year-old’s best years are behind him. Centuries-old grandfather clocks take less time to crank into life. They’re about as mobile, too.
Golazo de Cruz Azul vs Chivas jejejeje
— MéxicoFutSoccer (@MexicoFutsoccer) 6 July 2016
For what it’s worth, Guardiola rates the marauding Ivorian – Toure was a regular in three seasons under the Catalan at Barcelona, even as a now-unthinkable centre-back in the 2009 Champions League Final – but watching the City No.42’s tokenistic trotting when the opposition counter-attack isn’t the sort of high-energy pressing expected by his would-be coach.
Toure and his high-maintenance agent Dimitri Seluk might be careful what they wish for.