Well, well, well… an opinion-based article by a City Watch writer last night seems to have caused quite a stir among our readers, dividing them into seemingly two very distinct camps.
Pep has been heavily criticised for the manner in which he approached some of his post-match interviews yesterday, despite his team taking all three points from a game in which they had 10 men for sixty minutes. We’ve probably all seen the interviews in question, and whilst he was maybe a little rude, why is Pep getting so much stick?
Isn’t it funny how some members of the media spend most of their time attempting to get a rise out of managers, trying to get them to make comments which may land them with an FA fine, only to kick up a fuss when their efforts to cause a stir come back in their face?
Of course there are also those that are very measured in their approach, ask the right questions and in the right manner, and I’m sure Pep doesn’t take the same method of answering with them. A great example is Sam Lee from Goal, who is providing some balance rather than going all out for Pep:
I can't be 100% but I'd bet he doesn't like the way the Etihad can be impatient, like today. He can live with media being critical, not fans
— Sam Lee (@Sammy_Goal) January 2, 2017
Pep’s responses yesterday were arguably rude, sarcastic and very blunt, but certain parts of the media have been trying to get to this exact moment out of Pep since he arrived in England. Of course, many managers don’t rise to journalists trying to bleed controversial answers from them (probably for their benefit rather than being courteous), but on this occasion Pep rose and took the bait, and he’s taking some stick accordingly.
It’s fair to say meal has been made out of one bad incident, but the nature of journalism is such that you don’t really hear about the times that Pep has been polite to the media. They publicise those videos and articles that are likely to get people talking and arouse debate, it’s a simple and effective concept to hit their targets – but be wary not to take the bait.
Whilst it’s rare that managers take out their feelings on the press, it’s not completely unheard of and common sense should prevail – after all they are still human and it can happen to the best of us. To Klopp, for example:
Lovely, adorable Jurgen Klopp. If only Pep was as charming as this then I guess the press would love him. pic.twitter.com/j5tkGLmxDE
— Steven (@EsteemedKompany) January 3, 2017
I’m not making any excuses for Pep Guardiola, nor am I denying that his responses were maybe a little rude, but what I am saying is that the furore created by the media from this incident has been blown way out of proportion. As Adam pointed out in his article, he’s fully behind Pep as a manager, and we all need to sit back and have a little perspective. Pep Guardiola is a manager we have waited to get for years, even before Manuel Pellegrini’s stint at the club. He’s been the role for 6 months and is yet to get a team close to what he wants to have, yet some are jumping to conclusions about his leadership already. We all need to get behind the boss, without the fans the club is nothing and Pep Guardiola really wants those in the stands to be involved and believe in the project that is unfolding.