Pep Guardiola spending key to Manchester City success - Everton boss Allardyce
LIVERPOOL -- Sam Allardyce believes Manchester City's heavy spending has helped propel them to the Premier League title, but went on to praise the levels of success Pep Guardiola has had in the transfer market during his time at the Etihad Stadium.
City, who sit 16 points clear of Manchester United at the top of the table, are two wins away from lifting their first league title under Guardiola.
After finishing third in 2016-17, City embarked on a spending spree in the summer, signing Ederson, Kyle Walker, Bernando Silva, Danilo and Benjamin Mendy, while adding Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao in the January window.
Everton host City on Saturday evening and when asked at a news conference if Guardiola had learned from his first season in England or whether his players had become more adjusted to the Spaniard's demands, Allardyce replied: "And £350 million will have a bit to do with it.
"In all fairness, the money has been really well spent, hasn't it? I think that it's a lot of money, but it's been spent on quality players over [his] short period there.
"I think those players have brought so much more to the team overall. The average age of the player has been reduced I would think if you look at it.
"Certainly, the confidence has grown -- where they believe every game they walk out [thinking] they're not going to get beat. That grows and becomes another force before they even start.
"We can't be intimidated. We've got to go out there and get our game plan in place. We've got to master our game plan throughout the 90 minutes to get a result against a team that's riding high."
City have only been beaten once in the league this term, and Allardyce considers Guardiola's team to be one of the best the Premier League has ever seen.
"I don't think anybody has ridden high at the top of the Premier League this far away," he added. "It's a big challenge and one we should really look forward to.
"I suppose in the end, it's sustainability -- after this season and where would they go from here. If they actually go and win the Champions League as well then that puts them right up there.
"Winning the Premier League with such a gap is certainly going to be one of the top teams to ever be in the Premier League."
Meanwhile, Everton have been linked with a move for Arsenal's Jack Wilshere, who is out of contract at the end of the season.
Allardyce, whose own future at Goodison Park has been subject to speculation, did not specifically address the reported interest in the England midfielder, but admitted that players of that calibre would almost certainly be on Everton's radar.
"I think any player that's available or is going to leave his club of any decent quality would be of interest to us, without mentioning any specific names," he said.
"We have a huge amount of players already, so until we actually sit down altogether and draw up our plan for the exits and incomings, it's speculation at the moment."
Glenn is ESPN FC's Liverpool correspondent. You can follow him on Twitter: @GlennPrice94.