Pep Guardiola praises old foe Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of Manchester Derby

Manchester City and Manchester United lock horns this weekend meaning that Pep Guardiola will face off against his old rival Cristiano Ronaldo. The two have often played each other in El Clasico, when Guardiola was at Barcelona and Cristiano was at Real Madrid. They’ve enjoyed some fierce battles indeed.

Guardiola will be missing Cristiano’s compatriot Ruben Dias, however, who’ll be unavailable through injury for at least the next month. City will want to win to pull potentially nine points away from second-placed Liverpool. United could draw level with third-placed Chelsea. Guardiola made sure to praise Cristiano’s career.

“He’s been one of the best of the last 15 years,” Guardiola said as carried by Diario Sport. “He’s been the best alongside [Lionel] Messi. What these two have done we’ll never see again. When you’re at this level you’re under public scrutiny every day. It was a pleasure to see him during this era. We’re going to have to use all our qualities to prevent him from seeing too much of the ball.”

Cristiano returned to Manchester last summer after three years with Juventus and nine at the Santiago Bernabeu with Madrid, who he of course joined from United in 2009. His great ambition is to win a sixth Champions League title and draw level with the great Paco Gento this season. To do that, United have to beat Atletico Madrid in the last 16 of the competition.

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