Fast forward a few years down the line and Diaz will be sharing a dressing room with Isco having just signed for Real Madrid in a £22 million move.
"But you have to take a look at all the big clubs in Europe, how many young players that are in the first team immediately. He played good at Southampton, today Kyle plays the best game of the season by far", Guardiola said of his right-back selection dilemma.
He followed in the footsteps of Jadon Sancho, who left City in 2017 for Borussia Dortmund due to a perceived lack of first-team opportunities and has since become a regular for the Bundesliga side and an England global. If they (Liverpool) want to play quick, we want to play quicker.
"We spoke with him yesterday to play 65-70 minutes, full intensity, and to do everything that is good for his rhythm", Guardiola told a news conference. Never we manipulated it, always we try to put water (on the pitch) but it's not necessary here with the weather, it rains a lot.More news: Heathrow proposes extra 25,000 flights per year ahead of new runway opening
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"I never speak with the groundsmen..."
Guardiola has faced criticism for not handing enough opportunities to young players such as Sancho, Diaz and Phil Foden, who is also yet to be given a start in the Premier League. If the guys are not happy... if you want to stay here it's because you want to stay here'. Phil chose to stay.
"Last season he played incredible minutes but hopefully in the second leg of the season he will help us because we need him".
As the English game begins to earn itself a reputation for letting its best talent leave without properly offering up decent first team opportunities, Guardiola said managers needed to have "more courage" in their younger players.
The League Cup was the first trophy Guardiola lifted in England but he admitted it is low in his priorities. So I think it was my knee, so I kneed it in. "I never made a phone call to say 'do this to damager our opponents".