Pep Guardiola has said he is “sorry” his rivalry with Jose Mourinho has never taken off in the Premier League after fireworks between the two in Spain.
Guardiola and Mourinho had a toxic feud while in charge of Barcelona and Real Madrid respectively, but the rivalry never reached the same heights when the couple arrived in Manchester to take charge of Manchester City and Manchester United in 2016.
They will face each other again when City travel to Tottenham on Sunday and, before the clash, Guardiola jokingly presented that he and Mourinho could not recreate the same tension during their time together in England.
“I’m sorry for you, ” said Guardiola.
“I know you were waiting forward [to it]But I’m sorry. Maybe we are older and more experienced.
“I know that every time we played when he was Uni, always people didn’t talk about how we’re going to play or how he’s going to play, who’s going to win, it was just about my press conference, did I say something or did he say something and then do it and then you’re happy.
“But I’m sorry, I told you, it didn’t happen.”
Mourinho took over at Tottenham following the sacking of Mauricio Pochettino in November.
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It is the Portuguese’s first job since he was sacked by United in December 2018, but despite Mourinho’s mixed fortunes at Old Trafford, Guardiola insists his old foe should still be considered one of the best managers in the World.
“The value of Jose, a manager with a lot of experience, with great success, is not to be judged on a season, or a season and a half,” Guardiola said.
“Guys who judge his career not over 15 or 20 years is because people don’t understand anything. As a professional, I try to judge my colleagues not for one season, but 10 or 15 years, a long career. This for me gives more value.
“The times for managers are up and down, everyone has it. For 15 or 20 years, Jose has been here all the time and it has to be respected, from my point of view.
“Because I think it’s the hardest thing – to stay long and be there all the time.”