Pep Guardiola praises Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi: ‘He is unique’

NewsPep Guardiola praises Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi: 'He is unique'

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has heaped colleague Roberto De Zerbi with praise as the Spaniard described the Brighton Hove & Albion manager as one of the most influential managers in the world.

  • Guardiola praises De Zerbi
  • Brighton claim top 6 finish
  • City face Brighton on Wednesday

What is the news?

Pep Guardiola has nothing more than praise for Roberto De Zerbi’s performances at Brighton this season since taking over from Graham Potter early on in the season. The Italian manager led the Seagulls to an historic European qualification, as Brighton secured a top six finish in the Premier League last weekend. Ahead of Man City’s final away game of the season at Brighton, Guardiola praised De Zerbi for his achievements and his style of play, calling the Italian’s way of managing ‘unique’.

What did Guardiola say?

Talking to reports, Guardiola said: “Congratulations to Brighton for this incredible achievement of getting into Europe. I’m convinced that Roberto De Zerbi is one of the most influential managers in the last 20 years. There is no team that plays the way they play, it’s unique. I had the feeling that when he arrived I had an idea the impact he would have on the Premier League would be great but I couldn’t expect him to do it in such a short time. They create on average 20-25 chances per game. They monopolise the ball in a way that hasn’t been seen for a long time. Everybody is involved – the goalkeeper is like a holding midfielder.”

The backstory

De Zerbi never played on a top level but he did enjoy a playing career that took him through a number of clubs, including Napoli, Foggia and Catania. In 2013 he retired from the game and he focused on his managerial career. He enjoyed spells at Palermo and Benevento before taking the coaching job at Sassuolo in 2018. At the small Italian club De Zerbi was praised for his style of play and performances as the club had back-to-back top eight finishes in the Serie A. In 2021 he joined Shakhtar Donetsk, leaving the Ukrainians in July 2022 as a result of the Russian invasion. In September 2022 he succeeded Potter, who joined Chelsea.


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