Pep expects Citizens improvements

08 August 2021 20:14:11 GMTPlus11
Pep Guardiola is confident he has options to choose from at City.

Pep Guardiola admits that Manchester City are short of strikers, but expects the champions to bounce back from their 1-0 Community Shield defeat to Leicester City.

Guardiola's side are 10/11 to retain their Premier Leaguetitle, with 5/2 Chelsea and 7/2 Liverpool seen as their most likely challengers.

The Citizens have been heavily linked with a move for Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane, who is 14/1 to win the Golden Boot in the coming campaign.

Aguero exit leaves a gap

City's record goalscorer Sergio Aguero left the club for Barcelona during the summer and their former striker Kelechi Iheanacho scored the only goal of the game, an 89th-minute penalty, for FA Cup winners Leicester at Wembley on Saturday.

Guardiola was not too concerned by the result as he was without several first-team regulars due to injury or lack of match fitness following their involvement in the European Championship finals or the Copa America.

We know we will not be at our best, but the players will be better next Sunday.

Pep Guardiola

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Trophies the goal for Grealish

Youngsters Cole Palmer and Samuel Edozie started for the Citizens, while Jack Grealish, a £100million signing from Aston Villa, made his debut as a 65th-minute substitute.

Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden are recovering from injuries, but Guardiola will hope to have the likes of Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus available in his attacking unit for next weekend's league opener away to Spurs.

Player returns imminent

Asked about the club's pursuit of a replacement for Aguero, Guardiola told reporters: "It depends if it is possible. If it is, we do it, if not we go without a striker.

"Tomorrow seven or eight players arrive back. That's why I guess at the beginning of the season we will try to get results without being at our best.

"We know we will not be at our best, but the players will be better next Sunday. That is the process we have to do."

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