Pep Guardiola hits out after Douglas Luiz refused Manchester City permit

Rex Christensen
August 11, 2018

Me and [Brazil manager] Tite know more about it.

Guardiola was baffled by the decision as he thinks Luiz, who joined from Vasco Da Gama for £10.7 million a year... I am sad and disappointed as he could play with us, and the reason why we spent so much to buy him is he has a huge capacity to play with us, we work a lot with the work permit as we believe he can play. The FA rules on work permits are supposed to ensure only the highest quality of non-European player plays.

"We chose to play him [in pre-season] as we believe in him, but they didn't know him, no one game or training session".

The authorities denied Luiz a work permit because he has not played 30 per cent of Brazil's matches in the last two years and they do not consider him to be an exceptional talent who will eventually go on to represent his country on a regular basis. It's so hard for me to understand. If they decide the rules are the rules, let me know 15 days ago and maybe we can decide what we can do.

Argentinian Football Association president Claudio Tapia claimed an approach was made but Guardiola was too expensive - a comment which has irked the City boss.

"We were prepared to make an effort". There are many, and they are really good, so I'm not going to train Argentina.

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"So no, I'm a little bit disappointed because he can not say that I can not count on [sic] because his salary is fantastic, to know that he has to know my salary".

He said: "Nobody contacted me because of course I have a contract and I want to stay here with this project until the end".

He added: "The Argentina national team has to have an Argentinian manager". "To know that, he has to know my salary".

Luiz did not automatically qualify for a work permit, so Manchester City had to apply for an exemption. Having spent last season on loan at Girona, City's sister club, Guardiola had wanted the midfielder to form part of his squad for the coming season.

The decision was particularly hard to take for Guardiola as it came on transfer deadline day, allowing him no time to bring any other players into the club.

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