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  • By Alessandro Schiavone

Pep Guardiola: Palace are tough to beat but defensively they haven't changed

By Alessandro Schiavone

Pep Guardiola spoke in glowing terms about the new-look Crystal Palace, saying that they have come a long way from an attacking viewpoint under new gaffer Patrick Vieira.

But their defensive solidity isn’t an area where the Spaniard thinks they have improved.

In fact, they have always been a tough side to break down, even under the tutelage of Roy Hodgson between 2017 and last May.

Manchester City were comprehensively dispatched 2-0 by Crystal Palace at the Etihad Stadium courtesy of goals by Wilfried Zaha and Conor Gallagher as their unbeaten home record came to an end.

The former Barcelona and Bayern manager said: “Well, defensively [this Crystal Palace team] is quite similar. What I saw is they want to build out, there was more long balls.

“When they take the ball, they keep it and wanna play. They have good players. Right after the victory at Brighton, I said to the players that they should prepare for Crystal Palace mentally and not wait the day of the game because it would be a real, real tough game to play. I saw their games against Brighton and Arsenal away, so I know perfectly how difficult they are to beat and they showed it today.”


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