Pep Guardiola has taken a swipe at Manchester City’s critics by joking that city-rivals Manchester United went six years without a trophy before their Carabao Cup victory because “they didn’t spend” any money.
Manchester United defeated Newcastle at Wembley to win their first trophy since 2017 in the form of Carabao Cup, and Guardiola noted that given their recent spending, it was always just a matter of time until they began to compete at the top again.
The four-time Premier League champions’ manager shared his opinion on Erik ten Hag’s team after their 2-0 victory over Newcastle in Sunday’s showpiece event under the Wembley arc.
The Man City boss said: “Congratulations to United for the Carabao Cup and to Newcastle as well – the game was entertaining. Sooner or later it should happen, shouldn’t it? It should happen. Welcome.”
When asked if he believed United could consistently compete for the Premier League title, Pep said:
“If they spend a little more money, yes! It’s because they didn’t spend, isn’t it?”
The Sky Blues manager added: “I remember when we travelled to win our first Carabao Cup and everyone was so excited to do it. For the staff it was new, for the players it was new.”
“The fourth time we travelled there to win the Carabao Cup for the fourth time in a row, it was, ‘Well, it’s OK, another one, another day in the office’.”
In the last five seasons, Man City have spent £685 million, £25m more than United who’ve splashed £660 million.
But City’s net outlay is substantially smaller at £162m million owing to major sales such as Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko last summer.
On the other hand, United’s net spend over the last seven years is an astounding £527m, showing they have chucked more money at their effort to win silverware.
What Man United boss said about winning the first trophy
After lifting the first trophy, Erik ten Hag said: “It is about glory and honour and if you want to prove something and win something you have to do it because no one is bringing something to you in top football.”
“You have to win the first [trophy] and that is what we did today. You can take inspiration from this, but also more confidence.”
“We are still at the start [of the process] to restore Man United to where they belong. We showed the right spirit – we fought and gave everything, as a team. It wasn’t always the best football but it was effective. There is a hunger and desire for trophies.”
Manchester City and United are just 6 points apart with the Red Devils having a game in hand in the PL table. While Arsenal are holding the apex spot with a narrow two-point lead.