As he gets prepared to take on his former captain, now in charge of Burnley, in the FA Cup quarterfinals, Pep Guardiola admits playing against Vincent Kompany gives him the feeling of being old.
Kompany, who departed City in 2019 after more than a decade of duty, has had a significant influence since taking over lower-league Burnley last year.
“He was a fantastic character here,” said 52-year-old Guardiola, whose club plays host to the Championship team on Saturday. “He ranks among my greatest legends,” he said.
“On the other hand, I’m worried because you realize exactly how old you are now becoming when you begin a contest and the competitor on the side of the pitch is a player that you had.
“Even if it’s somewhat annoying, it’s good to see him. Both of us want to win, so we will treat it professionally.
Throughout his illustrious tenure at City, Kompany won two FA Cups and four League Cups in addition to the Premier League title four times.
Even during his senior years with the club, when injuries often restricted his playing time, he was a motivator and continued to have a significant impact.
The City Manager from Spain, Pep Guardiola, said on Friday: “I have one tiny regret that he was wounded for a lot of the time we were together, but the main thing was from day one how he assisted me.”
“I moved here from another country, and I didn’t know the Premier League.”
“He used to stand up in the locker room at tough times to assist the squad and personally speak to me about what he thought was best for the club.
“I’m really happy for him because he was a great captain and a great person.”
Burnley and the 36-year-old Kompany are on track to play in the Premier League once again. Kompany started his managerial career at Anderlecht.
With an additional six-point cushion over Middlesbrough in third place, his Clarets team leads the Championship by 13 points above Sheffield United.
According to what I have seen, I am not at all shocked by their position or what they have accomplished in the championship,”” stated Guardiola.
“I perfectly understand their actions, especially because they’re so close to joining the Premier League next season. They do amazing feats on the battlefield, making them a highly challenging opponent.”
After the last eight draws, Guardiola said that he considered Kompany to be a possible replacement at City.
Guardiola stated, “I’m more than confident he is going to make a return. Maybe he won’t agree with me, but after watching his teams, It will happen, but I have no idea when.”