Pep Guardiola labels Benjamin Mendy ‘one of the good guys’ despite Covid-19 breach

Pep Guardiola has defender French full-back Benjamin Mendy after his breach of Covid-19 regulations calling him ‘one of the good guys.’

Pep Guardiola labels Benjamin Mendy ‘one of the good guys’ despite Covid-19 breach

‘One of the good guys’

Pep Guardiola has defended his decision to include Benjamin Mendy in his matchday squad for the away fixture with Chelsea. The French full-back was an unused substitute with Oleksandr Zinchenko starting in the left full-back position.

It had been reported that Mendy had breached Covid-19 regulations during New Year’s Eve. Manchester City have been facing serious Covid-19 issues with eight members of playing and backroom staff testing positive. Carl Walker, Gabriel Jesus and Eric Garcia are among those who have tested positive for the virus.

However, the Spanish coach has backed Mendy claiming he had ‘good intentions.’

“No, he’s part of the group, he’s one of the good guys. It must be love in our group. He’s a special guy for all of us, he has an incredible heart. I would like to see how many people judge him, if they have the good intentions he has,” said Guardiola.

“It would be better if, before we judge others, we judge ourselves. I’m not justifying that, he broke the rules. But don’t give too many lessons to others.”

Pep Guardiola labels Benjamin Mendy ‘one of the good guys’ despite Covid-19 breach

Manchester City’s Spanish manager Pep Guardiola reacts after a goal scored by his team during the UEFA Champions League Group C football match between FC Shakhtar Donetsk and Manchester City FC at the OSK Metalist stadium in Kharkiv on September 18, 2019. (Photo by Sergei SUPINSKY / AFP) (Photo credit should read SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/Getty Images)

“Of course it was not correct what he has done, but don’t judge him too much. Maybe many people have done the same. It’s easy to judge others. If everyone put those intentions aside, maybe it would be better.”

Manchester City are still conducting an internal investigation as to Mendy’s breach of the regulations.

Won for the squad

Guardiola has said that their 3-1 win over Chelsea on Sunday afternoon was done for the benefit of the squad. As mentioned, many of the Manchester City squad and backroom staff are suffering from the Covid-19 virus having tested positive and are now self-isolating.

It meant that Guardiola was without his number one keeper Ederson and also no recognised starting striker with Jesus out and Sergio Aguero on the bench still recovering from a long-term injury.

“We played really well,” said Guardiola during his post-match press conference. “I say thank you to all the players in this difficult time because friends, players and backroom staff are suffering with COVID-19.

Pep Guardiola labels Benjamin Mendy ‘one of the good guys’ despite Covid-19 breach

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – JUNE 22: Pep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City gives his team instructions during a drinks break during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Burnley FC at Etihad Stadium on June 22, 2020 in Manchester, England. Football stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venus resulting in all fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

“They make a step forward and they make an incredible display against one of the best teams in England. A good result for us to be close to the top of the league. The important thing today is not just the result but especially the way we play. We understand each other. The players played really well.”

The win moved Manchester City up to fifth place in the table and just four points of leaders Liverpool and Manchester United. The Citizens also have a game in hand which would put them a single point behind their Manchester and Merseyside rivals.

Manchester City respond to Benjamin Mendy’s New Year’s Eve Covid-19 breach with 8 positive tests now recorded

Insight provided into Man City’s Covid cases as matchday squad (including Benjamin Mendy) to face Chelsea unveiled

This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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