July 21, 2020 / 3:07 AM / 20 days ago

Guardiola says 'not much' respect for Arsenal off the pitch

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Premier League - Manchester City v Arsenal - Etihad Stadium, Manchester, Britain - June 17, 2020 Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola and Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta after the match as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Peter Powell/Pool via REUTERS

(Reuters) - Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said Arsenal deserve credit for what they do on the pitch but he has little respect for them off it.

Arsenal knocked holders City out of the FA Cup with a 2-0 semi-final win on Saturday - days after Guardiola’s side had a two-year UEFA ban from European football overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

Spaniard Guardiola had previously taken aim at a group of nine Premier League clubs who reportedly wrote a letter to CAS to argue against City receiving a stay on their ban, which was due to allegations that they broke Financial Fair Play rules.

“After we were beaten we shake hands. The opponents always deserve my respect and credit,” Guardiola told reporters.

“And Arsenal, I have all the respect for what they are on the pitch, not much off the pitch - but on the pitch, a lot.”

City visit Watford later on Tuesday and finish their in the Premier League campaign with a home game against relegated Norwich City.

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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