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Guardiola moved to tears for his 'legends' while Zinchenko dedicates title to Ukraine

‘It means everything for me, honestly. I want to die for these people, for all this support. What people gave me, what they have done for me during this toughest period in my life.”

An emotional Pep Guardiola.
An emotional Pep Guardiola.
Image: PA

PEP GUARDIOLA HAILED his Manchester City players as legends while an emotional Oleksandr Zinchenko dedicated the Premier League title win to the people of Ukraine.

City produced a stunning comeback from two goals down to beat Aston Villa 3-2 and pip Liverpool at the top by just one point.

Zincenko, the Ukraine international, was introduced from the bench at half-time and spoke poignantly at the full-time whistle.

“It means everything for me, honestly. I want to die for these people, for all this support. What people gave me, what they have done for me during this toughest period in my life. I so appreciate it and will never forget this, never in my life,” he told Sky Sports.

“Unforgettable emotions for me. This is for all Ukrainians, which at the moment are starving, they are surviving in my country because of Russian aggression. I am so proud to be Ukrainian. I would love to one day bring this title to Ukraine, for all Ukrainian people, because they deserve it.”

manchester-city-v-aston-villa-premier-league-etihad-stadium City fans celebrate with a Ukrainian flag. Source: PA

Guardiola was also moved to tears at the final whistle after an emotional rollercoaster of an afternoon.

Needing to win to hold off Liverpool’s title charge, Guardiola’s men trailed Villa 2-0 until the 76th minute before Ilkay Gundogan came off the bench to score twice either side of Rodri’s strike.

“These guys are legends. When you win in this country four times in five years, it is because these guys are so special. They will be remembered forever,” said Guardiola.

In scenes reminiscent of the first of City’s now six league titles in 11 seasons when Sergio Aguero scored a 93rd minute winner to deny Manchester United the title on goal difference, the champions produced a remarkable comeback at the Etihad.

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Goals from Matty Cash and former Liverpool favourite Philippe Coutinho looked set to gift the Reds the title.

Jurgen Klopp’s men did their job by also coming from a goal down to beat Wolves 3-1 at Anfield, but City’s rescue act ensured Liverpool’s bid for an unprecedented quadruple is over.

“The magnitude of our achievement is the magnitude of our rival,” added Guardiola, after sealing his 10th league title in 13 seasons as Barcelona, Bayern Munich and City boss.

“Liverpool make us stronger. At 2-0 down we thought we need one goal because with our people and momentum we could do it.”

– © AFP 2022

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