Pep Guardiola delivers shock verdict on Chelsea
By Dominic Toner
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola described Chelsea as “one of the best teams in Europe” following their triumph at the Etihad.
Chelsea’s recent run of results has been staggering considering that they slumped to 10th in the Premier League last season, but Guardiola still believes that they are a top team.
The Spaniard’s comments come as a surprise after his side were defeated by Chelsea at the weekend, but had several chances to win the game and Kevin De Bruyne missed a great opportunity inside the penalty area.
The Londoners are also not in any Euoprean competition this season and are having to rebuild after several of their players underperformed last campaign.
Antonio Conte’s side completed a remarkable 3-1 victory against Man City on Saturday and strengthened their grip on the top of the Premier League.
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Guardiola’s side took the lead in the first-half as Gary Cahill scored an unfortunate own goal, but Chelsea hit back after the break with a classic away performance.
Diego Costa, Willian and Eden Hazard completed the turnaround, but Sergio Aguero was sent off late on for a horror challenge on David Luiz, with Fernandinho also dismissed for his role in a confrontation with Cesc Fabregas.
Guardiola has praised his team for the way they performed and also showed his appreciation of Chelsea.
“Chelsea played good. We created an unbelievable amount of chances against one of the best teams in Europe,” Guardiola said, as quoted by the club’s official Twitter account.
PEP: Chelsea played good. We created an unbelievable amount of chances against one of the best teams in Europe. #mcfc
— Manchester City (@ManCity) December 5, 2016
Guardiola has managed top clubs Barcelona and Bayern Munich in the past, but has recognised Chelsea as one of the best.
The Blues have enjoyed a remarkable turnaround since switch to a 3-4-3 formation during the 3-0 defeat against Arsenal.
Conte’s side have won eight consecutive Premier League games since then and conceded just two goals.
Star players such as Costa and Hazard are now back to their best, while wing-backs Victor Moses and Marcos Alonso have looked fantastic.
They have risen to the summit of the league table and are now regarded as favourites for the title following back-to-back victories against Man City and Tottenham.
In other Chelsea news, the club’s supporters reacted on Twitter to Liverpool’s defeat against Bournemouth.