Guardiola defends Thomas Tuchel’s style of football at Chelsea, says “every manager plays in the way they play”

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has defended Thomas Tuchel’s style of football, with the German largely sticking to the same shape and system in each game so far since his arrival at Stamford Bridge.

That 13-match unbeaten start no doubt confirmed to Tuchel that 3-4-2-1 or 3-4-1-2 was the way to play and it’s apparent it suits Chelsea.

The likes of Ben Chilwell, Reece James and Callum Hudson-Odoi have all the attributes to meet the demands of wing-back play and are forging a good understanding with the forward line.

Meanwhile, the tireless N’Golo Kante, ball-playing Jorginho and composed Mateo Kovacic offer protection for the back three when the wing-backs are caught upfield during a counter.

Since Tuchel arrived at Stamford Bridge at the end of January, he has managed to guide his side to Champions League and FA Cup semi-finals, while the Blues are pushing Leicester City and West Ham for a top-four spot.

One of his toughest tasks yet comes against Guardiola’s Premier League champions-elect in the FA Cup last four on Saturday at Wembley, with a showdown against either Leicester City or Southampton in May’s final at stake.

Although Tuchel failed to record a win against Guardiola’s Bayern Munich while in charge at Bundesliga clubs Mainz and Borussia Dortmund, the Spanish boss was never in doubt that his opposite number would succeed at Chelsea.

“I know him from Mainz,” Guardiola said on Friday.

“When I was in Munich, after he went to Dortmund and spent one or two games playing exactly the way he wanted to play.

“It was difficult to take over a team during the season but he has a lot of experience winning at a top club like PSG and now another club at Chelsea.

“I knew from the beginning he would do a good job.’

“Every manager plays in the way they play,’ Guardiola added on Tuchel’s style of football.

“Frank did an incredible job in the first season when he could not sign players and qualified for the Champions League.

“I admire both as a person and a manager. Tomorrow we face Thomas.

“He knows how I admire him and how good he is as a manager. It will be a good battle.”