Update 3.55pm: Pep Guardiola regrets speaking to Nathan Redmond in the manner he did after Manchester City’s victory over Southampton on Wednesday.
The Football Association has asked the City boss to explain his version of events following an aggressive-looking discussion with the Saints player after the final whistle at the Etihad Stadium.
It initially appeared Guardiola was confronting Redmond to complain about something but he said afterwards he was complimenting the player. This was later corroborated by Redmond himself.
But Guardiola has now conceded he should not have approached Redmond in such a way, although he could not contain his emotions in the exhilarating aftermath of Raheem Sterling’s injury-time winner.
Asked if he regretted the incident, Guardiola said: “Yes. I did it in Munich, with my old player (Joshua) Kimmich, I did the same in Dortmund and had regret there after the game and the same now.
“I cannot control myself. Hopefully I will improve. What I said is what I said and what Nathan said in his statement.
“I admire him as a player and say thank you for his comments but if the FA want my statement again I am able to explain whatever they want. If they don’t believe me I don’t know what we’re doing here.
“When I give you an opinion, I give you an opinion. You can agree or not, but if I’m explaining what happened and the people don’t believe me then let’s cancel our press conferences and just play the games. If they want to listen to me then I will do it. It’s not a problem.”
Guardiola said after the game that he was telling Redmond “how good a player he is”.
Adding to that at a press conference today, he said: “I said to Nathan, ‘You have to attack because you have the quality to do that’.”
Redmond released a statement saying Guardiola “was very passionate, intense and aggressive but he was only very complimentary and positive to me”.
He added: “I told him I was doing what my manager had asked me to do in the game.”
That led to suggestions that Guardiola might have been undermining Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino but the City boss has denied this.
Guardiola said: “I have played against millions of managers and the different ways they play. I never judge and never will judge the way my opponents play against my team.
“Never in my career, on or off the pitch, was I disrespectful about what they believe they have to do to beat me. It’s the same as I do to beat them.
“My emotion was there because of how I celebrated, scored the goal after 96 minutes.”
Guardiola has until December 4 to respond to the FA’s request.
Update 1.05pm: Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has been asked to explain his version of events following his animated post-match conversation with Southampton’s Nathan Redmond.
The Football Association today said it had sought observations from Guardiola, who has until December 4 to respond.
Premier League leaders City won 2-1 through Raheem Sterling’s stoppage-time goal.
Speaking after the match, Guardiola claimed Southampton “didn’t want to play” and “were time-wasting from the ninth minute”.
But he insisted he was praising Redmond despite his rather aggressive-looking manner.
“(I told him) how good a player he is,” Guardiola said.
“Last season he destroyed us here. I didn’t know him last season, I realised how good he is.
“Today he could not attack because they defend all the time, but that is what it is.
“I spoke with Oriol Romeu as well, with (Virgil) van Dijk and with my players as well.”
The Saints forward on Thursday dismissed suggestions that Guardiola insulted him during the on-field rant that came in wild scenes following Sterling’s winner with virtually the last kick of the game.
Redmond backed up the Catalan’s account of events following reports which suggested Guardiola had in fact been strongly criticising the once-capped England player.
In a statement posted on Twitter, Redmond wrote: “Yes he was very passionate, intense and aggressive but he was only very complimentary and positive to me.
“He commented on my qualities as a young English player and how he wanted me to attack his team more during the game in a similar way to last season.
“I told him I was doing what my manager had asked me to do in the game. That’s it. Nothing negative or offensive was said towards me from Pep and that’s what makes him one of the best managers in world football.
“Losing the game the way we did in the last kick of the game after working so hard for 90+ minutes I was very disappointment (sic) but when one of the world’s best managers compliments you or gives advice in any way, you listen.”
City play West Ham on Sunday at the Etihad Stadium.