Pep ‘a little bit’ surprised at Walker exclusion

Pep Guardiola has no concerns over Kyle Walker’s confidence levels after he was surprisingly left out of Gareth Southgate’s England squad for next month’s Euro 2020 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Kosovo.

Guardiola admitted he was “a little bit” surprised when he first heard the news, but added: “I’m not involved. We respect the decision. I think Kyle is coming back and is stronger.

“But the decision, of course I understand it and we support the manager of the national team, Gareth, and of course Kyle.

“I’m sure the players want to go to the national team and play but this happens, so you adapt.”

Walker was left out of the the England squad in favour of Aaron Wan-Bissaka, who joined Man Utd from Crystal Palace this summer for £50million.

Southgate has assured Walker that he is still England’s number one right-back.

Man City face Brighton on Saturday who have taken four points from their opening three games but on the back of a 2-0 loss to Southampton last week, when they played an hour with 10 men following the first-half dismissal of Florin Andone.

“They have a new manager, of course, so there are some changes,” Guardiola said of Graham Potter’s side. “They play five at the back where last season they played four at the back.

“They are more aggressive in terms of his pressing. They have stared quite well. The last game against Southampton, when you play 55 or 60 minutes against 11 it’s not easy. We prepare for the game and try to win it.”

 

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