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Guardiola: The best two sides I ever faced were Klopp’s Liverpool & Luis Enrique’s Barcelona

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The teams Pep admires the most

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FC Barcelona v FC Bayern Muenchen - UEFA Champions League Semi Final Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has named the two strongest sides he has ever faced as manager: Liverpool under Jürgen Klopp and Barcelona under Luis Enrique.

“In my career as a manager, I played against incredible sides,” the City manager said. “There are two that were, ‘Wow’. One is Barcelona with Luis Enrique, with Neymar, [Lionel] Messi and [Luis] Suarez up front. The other is this Liverpool. I think they’re the best two sides I’ve faced as a manager.

“That’s why, arriving at this stage, two games left with 92 points, after 100 points [last season], is the most satisfaction I’ve had as a manager.

Source: The Telegraph

City are on the verge of pipping Liverpool to the Premier League title as Barcelona, now managed under Ernesto Valverde, are set to visit Anfield in the UEFA Champions League semifinals. Liverpool are two points ahead in the Premier League the moment, with one match left to play. But City have two matches left, and thus control their own destiny.

Guardiola drew one match and won the other in his two meetings with Liverpool this season, both extremely even contests. Last season, Liverpool eliminated City from the Champions League.

Luis Enrique’s Barcelona won the treble in 2015 after eliminating Guardiola’s Bayern 5-2 on aggregate in the Champions League semis.

Guardiola was in attendance as Barcelona won the first leg of their tie against Liverpool this season:

“When I saw the way Liverpool played in the Camp Nou [against Barcelona in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final], I said, ‘Wow, we are at that level.’ They showed me incredible things, Liverpool in the Camp Nou. They lost one game in the Premier League but we have more than 20 points than third, fourth, fifth and sixth in the league. I didn’t expect to maintain that level. When you get 100 points everyone thinks we won’t do what we have to do, we will do less because we won, but it was completely the opposite.”