Man City must cope with Aguero, Mendy absences - Pep Guardiola
MANCHESTER -- Manchester City can't afford to worry about the absence of Sergio Aguero and Benjamin Mendy if they are to be successful, insists Pep Guardiola.
Captain Vincent Kompnay will also be missing, but Guardiola says previous clubs Barcelona and Bayern Munich had to cope without senior players and City must do the same if they are to become successful.
"We want to become a big club, I've been at two amazing clubs in my life, you have to overcome this situation. If we start to complain we'll never reach the step we want to take," Guardiola told a news conference.
"I'd like to play with Sergio because we are strong with him but he's not there, no complaints. We'll go there and play the way we'd have done it with Sergio, Kompany, Mendy.
"We have to overcome these situations if you want to become a team that others consider big and say it doesn't matter what happens. The big clubs do it -- they overcome the difficult situations.
"We've broken two pieces, how do we react? With Sergio, Mendy, Kompany it's always difficult at Stamford Bridge -- the last champions of the Premier League. Always complicated. How we react in that situation is what I want to see.
"If people are saying we can't do it now, we'll never reach what we want in the next five or six years."
City were beaten home and away by Chelsea, and Guardiola said the 3-1 defeat at the Etihad Stadium in December was a turning point in their season.
His side led 1-0, missing a number of good chances, before Chelsea hit three late goals while Aguero and Fernandinho were given late red cards.
"I admire many things about what they do, the manager, the way they play. They can play amazing counter-attack, set pieces, they defend deep then attack. They control all the aspects of football," Guardiola added.
"That's why they won the Premier League -- they were able to win three days ago in one of the toughest stadiums in the world, that's good for the Premier League, especially what I like the most is they don't create a lot of chances.
"They shoot four times and score four goals against Tottenham. When this happens it means a lot, it's a top team. They have that ability -- they are killers when they have one chance -- one goal. That's why they're a good team."
Jonathan is ESPN FC's Manchester City correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @jonnysmiffy.