After serving a one-match ban against Lyon in the Champions League opener, Pep Guardiola has led his Manchester City team by the touchline in a tight 2-1 triumph over TSG Hoffenheim on Tuesday evening.
The defending Premier League champions have won their first European game this season, but their performance was far from encouraging, especially when it comes to their defensive game.
Guardiola’s tactical ideas that came up as revolutionary during his time with Barcelona has nearly cost the Citizens another Champions League failure.
Although it’s evident the 47-year-old Spaniard won’t abandon his football philosophy, it was clear that his side struggled against the high pressure and fast-breaking counter-attacks in both of their Champions League races.
Nonetheless, some wayward decisions by referee Damir Skomina could have led the encounter to a whole opposite direction.
When asked to give his opinion about the Slovenian official, Guardiola decided not to repeat his last season’s mistake against Liverpool that cost him a suspension.
Instead, he said: “I don’t want to talk, I don’t want to talk, I don’t want to talk about officials.
“I want to be with my players in the next games. I know what happened against Monaco at home and against Liverpool last season. I don’t want to talk, I don’t want to talk, I don’t want to talk about officials.”
David Silva’s 87th-minute winner may have saved the day this time, but the scandalous defensive mistakes by Aymeric Laporte and Nicolas Otamendi would be hard to overshadow sometimes.