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Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City Tougher Than Manchester United Under Sir Alex Ferguson Says Nigel Clough

Pep has received some top praise from Wednesday's opponents
Pep has received some top praise from Wednesday's opponents

Burton Albion manager Nigel Clough is facing a tough test tomorrow night as he takes his Burton side to Manchester to take on the current Premier League champions. Clough has had a lot of experience facing big sides as Burton boss as he managed them for 11 years between 1998 and 2009.

The Brewers, then in the conference, secured an incredible 0-0 draw in the FA Cup third round back in 2008 against Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United. They got tonked in the replay but managed to hold onto a draw even when Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney were subbed on in a bid to win the game late on.

He was asked by a reporter ahead of the game who would be tougher, Fergie’s United or Guardiola’s City. He replied in jovial fashion: “I think this one over two legs. I think the pitch is going to be a bit better this time around, if anybody remembers the pitch against Manchester United!

“But we're facing similar sorts of tasks.

“When Rooney and Ronaldo came on after 59 minutes here for Manchester United, it's a similar sort of prospect with the likes of the quality that Manchester City have.

“But away from home, it's a different thing. When they are on their own patch, as you saw against Liverpool, they're as good and as confident as anything.

“That's when they've come off a relatively poor period for them, they've lost a couple of matches recently and then they can still play like they did against Liverpool and keep the title race open.

“That says an awful lot about them.”

If Clough and his Burton boys can get a result at the Etihad it would be one of the shocks of the season but Guardiola’s men showed their ruthlessness with a 7-0 romp of Rotherham at the weekend. The winner of this two-legged tie will take on either Spurs or Chelsea in the final as the two London sides play their first leg today.

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