International

Guardiola proud of City youngsters despite defeat

2016-10-27 09:03
Aleksandar Kolarov and Pep Guardiola (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola said he was "proud" of his players despite their loss to Manchester United in the fourth-round of the EFL Cup on Wednesday.

United booked a quarter-final place after the game finished 1-0, with Juan Mata scoring in the 54th minute.

City made a host of changes to their starting lineup and gave game time to fringe players against a strong set of United starters at Old Trafford.

"I am so proud of our performance, congratulations to United, but I am so proud of our young players and how we played," Guardiola said.

"I want to try to win, but that's competition. Next season we will try again," he said.

"We had our chances, two or three on the counter... At that level, it's when you are more clinical with the last pass, but it's always difficult against United," he said. "We competed well."

The loss put Guardiola on his worst winless run as a manager. City have not won in their past six games in all competitions.

However, the Spaniard put on a brave face.

"They did a good job," he said. "[Pablo] Maffeo was amazing, fighting with [Marcus] Rashford and [Paul] Pogba and he won almost all the duels. I am so proud, we are happy."

"I want to try to win, but that's competition," he said. "Next season we will try again and we have to try to focus on the next competitions."

City's next opponents are West Bromich Albion, who they travel to play in the Premier League this weekend.

It was not clear whether Vincent Kompany would play after he left the field against United.

"He told me he could not play anymore," Guardiola said after the game.

In the draw for next month's EFL Cup quarter-finals following the game, United were drawn against West Ham.

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