Guardiola makes brutal jibe at Liverpool icon in defence of Man City titles
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Pep Guardiola made a brutal jibe at Liverpool icon Steven Gerrard while defending Manchester City's titles.
On Monday the reigning Premier League champions were charged with 101 breaches of the competition's rules relating to a period between 2009 and 2018.
Following a four-year investigation, the club have been referred to an independent commission. If found guilty the commission may recommend sanctions ranging from fines to league expulsion.
City are also at risk of being stripped of their six Premier League titles, which were all won after Sheikh Mansour and the Abu Dhabi United Group’s 2008 takeover.
The Manchester club have said they were "surprised" by the charges and are supported by a "body of irrefutable evidence".
Pep Guardiola’s defence
Yet the Spaniard defiantly insisted on his club’s innocence and issued a fresh dig at Liverpool by referencing an infamous Gerrard slip against Chelsea in 2014 that famously helped City to the league title.
Asked at a media briefing if he would have the same emotional attachment to the trophies won during his City tenure if charges are proven, Guardiola said: “Those moments belong to us. They absolutely belong to us, regardless of the sentence they belong to us.
“The goal from Sergio Agüero [in 2012], when Balotelli slipped. I don’t know if we are responsible for Steven Gerrard slipping at Anfield. Was that our fault? I have respect for Steven Gerrard – but that moment belongs to us.
“The moments that we lived these years together, the Premier League will decide … but I know what we won and the way we won it. I know the effort we put in. If something happened in 2009 or 2010 it is not going to change one second.”
The City boss added: “What I can say is I am proud of my owners, of my chairman, and the relationship we have had, this time together.
“I have relied on them [and what they told me] a lot in the past, now you can’t imagine. If they want me here I will be here.
“The results are not good, they will put me out because it is a business where you have to win. But if they want me I will not let them down and my players, too. I want to convince them that what we have done, we have done and they won’t remove it.”