Pep Guardiola warns Manchester City they still have it all to do ahead of Champions League clash against Lyon

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City boss Guardiola is taking nothing for granted. (AFP)
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Updated 27 November 2018
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Pep Guardiola warns Manchester City they still have it all to do ahead of Champions League clash against Lyon

  • City need a point to clinch a place in the knockout phase for the sixth year running.
  • Young gun Foden set to start.

MANCHESTER: Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has warned the Premier League leaders that they still have work to do as they attempt to seal a place in the last 16 of the Champions League on Tuesday.
City will clinch a place in the knockout phase for the sixth year running with a draw at Lyon, while victory would wrap up top spot in Group F with a game to spare.
Guardiola’s side suffered a 2-1 loss at home to Lyon in their opening game in September, but City are firmly back on track after winning 12 of their previous 13 matches since their lone defeat of the season.
“When you lose your first game at home the group stage becomes so tough. We did our job winning the next three games and now we try to avoid arriving in the last game needing to win the game to qualify,” Guardiola said.
“We reacted well but the job is not over. We have to win one more game to be there (next round) and hopefully tomorrow we can do that.”
“If you make one or two mistakes you can be out. It’s so dangerous this competition,” he added. “It’s not done until it’s done. We’d like to avoid that pressure to play against Hoffenheim in the final game.
“We came here to do our jobs. The last month has been so good for us, we’ve scored lots of goals and played at a very high level. I want to qualify, that is the first target.”

FODEN TO START?

City left for France without Bernardo Silva, Gabriel Jesus or Ilkay Gundogan due to injury concerns, and highly-rated 18-year-old midfielder Phil Foden could be in line to start.
Foden has made just a handful of appearances as a substitute for City in the league and Europe, but Guardiola had no doubt the teenager would rise to the challenge.
“He’s stronger and more conscious that he’s able to play with us without a doubt,” said Guardiola of Foden’s progression this term.

Phil Foden is highly rated by City coach Guardiola.


“I have the feeling every time he played, he played good. He’s ready, he’s definitely ready.”
Center-back Aymeric Laporte will return to his homeland as an established figure in the City defense, in contrast to his continued absence from Didier Deschamps’ France squad.
Signed for a then club record £57 million ($73 million) in January, Laporte took time to settle in his new surroundings with all three of his Champions League outings last season ending in defeat.
But the 24-year-old was the beneficiary of a full pre-season under Guardiola after being overlooked for the World Cup, and he is City’s only outfield player to have played every single minute of Champions League and Premier League action this campaign.
“We try to learn day after day and that’s exactly what I’m trying to do to ensure that I earn Pep’s confidence,” said Laporte.
His lack of international commitments has afforded Laporte ample time to recover and allowed him to devote his undivided attention to helping City on all fronts.
“Maybe for the French people it (his selection) will have an impact but I play for Manchester City and the objective is to be high-performing for them today, tomorrow and in the future.”


Saudi weightlifter Mansour Al-Saleem wins record 3 Asian gold medals

Updated 21 April 2019
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Saudi weightlifter Mansour Al-Saleem wins record 3 Asian gold medals

  • Al-Saleem won three gold medals in the snatch, jerk and combination in the 55kg weight category
  • The competition in Ningbo, in China's eastern province of Zhejiang, will continue for the next 8 days

RIYADH: Saudi national Mansour Abdulrahim Al-Saleem won three gold medals in the snatch, jerk and combination, ranking the first in the 55 kg weight category, at the Asian Weightlifting Championships in China.

He lifted 122 kilograms to head the standings, with Kazakhstan’s Arli Chontey and Malaysia’s Azroy Hazalwafie following on 113kg and 112kg, respectively.

The clean and jerk discipline saw Al-Saleem again head the leaderboard on 140kg.

Hazalwafie lifted just four kilograms less in second, while Sri Lanka’s Dilanka Isuru Kumara was third on 135kg.

Al-Saleem’s efforts in both disciplines saw him convincingly clinch the overall title with a combined 262kg.

He finished ahead of Hazalwafie on 248kg, while Chontey placed third on 246kg.

The champion set a new achievement by winning the first Asian gold medal in weightlifting for the Kingdom.

The president of the Saudi Weightlifting Federation, Mohammed Al-Harbi, thanked King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, sports officials and the Saudi people for supporting the field, which led to “such a great achievement.”

Amidst an arena full of a host of Olympic and international champions, Saudi Arabia’s national anthem was played and the Kingdom’s flag was raised, as Al-Saleem praised the ability of Saudi sportsmen in all international and regional sports sectors.

A further eight days of competition will continue for the next 8 days in China's eastern city of Ningbo, in Zhejiang province. Medals will be won across 20 categories, 10 for men and 10 for women.