GARY NEVILLE has been left squirming after Pep Guardiola slammed his suggestions he tells his Manchester City players to deliberately concede fouls.
City boss Guardiola was left fuming when Neville claimed during his punditry of the win at Tottenham that the champions pushed the boundaries of the rules in matches.
The former Manchester United defender highlighted how City were “clever” at giving away soft free-kicks when teams were breaking quickly on them – almost as if the player were carrying out instructions.
That incurred the wrath of Guardiola – who took aim directly at Neville in his response.
He said: “I do not agree with that at all.
“We are not a team that goes looking for these type of situations and I would never ask my players to deliberately foul an opponent.
“That never happened at Barcelona or Bayern Munich and it will never happen here.
“It is not a secret that when we lose the ball we like to win it back quickly and if you watch us play you can see that when the opponents have the ball we are going to push them and press then to try and regain possession.
“As Gary Neville knows very well, opponents are not going to stand still and let you do that, they are going to try to play too, so sometimes there will be contacts and sometimes you arrive late.
“I do not say we are perfect, we do commit fouls, and on a pitch like the one Spurs had at Wembley there might be more contact than normal but I don’t think anyone can say we are a team that commits a lot of fouls.”
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Neville has spent the past week coming out fighting against criticism from Harry Redknapp over his views on the softness of the old Tottenham sides.
But he was less confrontational having been made aware of Guardiola’s stinging rebuke.
He took to Twitter and wrote: “It was actually meant as a compliment but hey ho!”