Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger reveals admiration for Man City boss Pep Guardiola

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger reveals admiration for Man City boss Pep Guardiola

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger can see similarities between Pep Guardiola’s journey in management and his own.

Wenger will pit his wits against the Spaniard when Arsenal travel to the Etihad Stadium to face Guardiola’s Manchester City on Super Sunday.

While he thinks his earlier years differ greatly to former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss Guardiola, he feels the pair have plenty in common.

 “He started at Barcelona, I started in an academy,” Wenger said.

“It’s not the same, but I must say he has done extremely well and he is one of the most respected managers in the game, if not the most, and maybe rightly so.

“Every manager has a personality and can only act with his own personality. You cannot copy a manager, you can only be who you are.

“He has been influenced at Barcelona by the Johan Cruyff period when he was a player. And I think he has strong beliefs and that for me is the most important thing for a manager.”

Asked what he thought of Guardiola’s philosophy when compared to his own, Wenger replied: “They are similar, he tries to play. Do I admire him? Yes, of course.”

Guardiola has faced criticism in recent weeks as City have spectacularly fallen off the pace in the race for the Premier League title following a run of three wins in their last six league games.

The City boss has seen his methods questioned with his side appearing to find it difficult to get used to his managerial philosophy.

Wenger came to the Premier League in 1996 as a relative unknown and as one of the first foreign managers in the history of the division.

Asked about the reaction to Guardiola’s first six months in charge at City, Wenger cited his own appointment over 20 years ago as a sign of how the times have changed for foreign coaches

“I should get some newspapers when I arrived here and you will see that it’s much easier today for the foreign managers,” he said.

“I would say when I arrived here it was difficult for the foreign managers. Today it is difficult for the English managers, that’s what has changed.

“People are always resistant to radical change. They are ready to cope with it if it is successful.

“Our job is to always accept that you want your own philosophy but at the right pace, and when you go somewhere, sometimes you have to analyse what is going on and to bring in your own philosophy at a pace where you think they can cope with it.”