The Catalan media have followed the evolution of Manchester City kindly for some time, but of course, with the arrival of Pep Guardiola as manager, everything stepped up in the summer. There’s a full time reporter in Manchester for Sport, and it’s all positive stuff, the ‘mini-me’ Barcelona in England gets good press.
So what happens ahead of the Champions League matches between Pep’s City and Barcelona? The gushing should continue in the main, but it’ll be certainly interesting to see what the reaction is if there’s any controversial surrounding the match.
Looking ahead to it, the Catalan press are already suggesting mind games over the fitness of Kevin De Bruyne. Thursday’s edition of Sport has a page on Manchester City, as it often does, and the stories are: De Bruyne’s fitness, Aymeric Laporte turning them down, and ‘When the marketing beat Nolito’.
Not quite as cuddly as usual.
The story is told of how Nolito’s transfer to Manchester City was completed before the Pep Guardiola presentation. Nolito had a tour of the club’s facilities and got dressed up in his new Manchester City gear for a photo-shoot.
However, as Sport tell it, when he asked if he could take the shirt home, which had the new club crest on it, his request was refused.
Sport say: ‘The answer was unexpected: “No, you can not.” The reason was purely marketing.’
Nolito understood and had to wait until after the Citizens Weekend.
If this is the start of little digs, we hope it gets far bitchier, and therefore more entertaining.