Footage from Manchester City’s new Amazon Prime documentary has shown Pep Guardiola telling his players how to stop Liverpool’s front three ahead of their 5-0 victory of the Reds at Etihad last season.
While Liverpool beat Manchester City on three occasions last season, knocking the Citizens out of the Champions League in spectacular fashion, they did get beaten 5-0 earlier on in the season.
The opening episode of City’s new ‘All or Nothing’ eight part series shows a scene where Pep is explaining to his players how to thwart the Reds’ front three of Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mané.
The scene takes place in a lecture theatre as the Spanish manager instructs his players on what to do in transition to stop the electrifying effects of the Liverpool frontmen.
The Mirror reports that the key message was to “close the channels”. Pep said: “Today I’m going to explain to you what they do in attack, with the ball – Liverpool.
“It’s a team who is so good at running – runs in behind – because the men up the pitch are so important.
“Just focus today, when the ball is outside, close the channel. Mane and Salah, play in those positions, so when the ball is here (midfield) they make the move or put the ball here (the channel).
“They are so fast. Even when the (City) full-back has to go, try to make that movement (out wide) to close here, the play here (inside). Okay?”
Turns out that the best way to stop the front three is to have one of them sent off as City really only started to turn the screw when Mané was correctly sent off for kicking Ederson in the face as the pair challenged for a 50/50.
Salah was subsequently taken off and City’s fullbacks were allowed to maraud forward unimpeded where they were previously too preoccupied with trying to keep the likes of Salah quiet.