Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola confirmed that his players will be giving the customary guard of honour to recently-crowned Premier League champions Liverpool when the two teams clash at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday.
Liverpool became champions of England after City lost to Chelsea 1-2 away from home recently and it became mathematically impossible for them catch up with ‘The Reds’ on the points table, despite seven matches to go.
Guardiola stated that Liverpool deserve the guard of honour, which is given to league winners who win the title before the last match of the season. The opposition players stand in line and applaud the champions as they walk out on the pitch before kickoff.
“We are going to do the guard of honour of course,” Guardiola was quoted as saying by BBC Sport. “We will greet Liverpool, when they come to our house, in an incredible way. We are going to do it because they deserve it.”
This is Liverpool’s first top-flight title in 30 years and maiden Premier League title. Following their historic win, manager Jurgen Klopp paid tribute to his predecessor, Kenny Dalglish, who was the last Anfield manager to claim the title, as well as his former captain Steven Gerrard, who came so close to leading his team to the trophy in 2012/13.
“It is unbelievable. It”s much more than I ever thought would be possible,” Klopp was quoted as saying by the official Premier League website. “Knowing how much Kenny supported us, it is for you.
“He has waited 30 years and it”s for Stevie Gerrard. The boys admire you all and it”s easy to motivate the team because of our great history.”