Man City vs Newcastle: Bruno Guimaraes a ‘complete’ holding midfielder, Guardiola says before FA Cup fixture

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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has called Newcastle’s Bruno Guimaraes a “complete holding midfielder” in remarks which will intensify speculation that the reigning Premier League champions want to sign the Brazil international.

The Cityzens host the Magpies in the FA Cup quarter-finals on Saturday, when Guardiola is likely to have the opportunity to closely admire a player the holders have been linked with by media reports.

“He’s aggressive with the ball and at set-pieces,” said Guardiola, assessing the Newcastle signing who joined in January 2022 for a fee which could rise to £40 million and signed a new five-year contract in December.

“I’m pretty sure he’s part of their project for the [coming] years, definitely. Bruno is an exceptional, complete holding midfielder.”

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City’s only defeat in the last 12 editions of the fixture came in a 1-0 Carabao Cup defeat in September.

“Since Eddie Howe’s been there and the people from Saudi Arabia have taken over, they have been tight games,” said Guardiola, referencing the Englishman’s appointment in November 2021 following the takeover of the club by a consortium backed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.

“They are stepping up a level – it’s like us when we began [working at City]. They need support behind the scenes. They are going to take lessons and get closer and closer.”

 

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Pope injury return: Newcastle ‘pleased’

Howe will be without Nick Pope again as a result of the dislocated shoulder his first-choice goalkeeper sustained in December.

“April is the target for him,” the Newcastle manager said. “More towards the end of April than beginning, but he’s making good, solid progress.

“He’s on the grass but not diving – that is a big test for his shoulder and that is the next stage of his game.

“Then it’s getting sharpness back. He’s entering the final furlong. We’re pleased with where he is at but he’s still got hurdles to go.”

Martin Dubravka continued to deputise for Pope in Newcastle’s 3-2 Premier League defeat at Chelsea on Monday.

Ben Miller
Ben Miller
Ben has more than 10 years' experience in sports journalism, covering two EURO tournaments, European club competitions, the Premier League, EFL and WSL and a variety of other major sporting events.

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