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Published: 15:05 | 10/9/16

Guardiola defends debutant Bravo


Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says he was pleased by Claudio Bravo's performance against Manchester United.

City beat Jose Mourinho's side 2-1 at Old Trafford to make it seven wins from seven matches in all competitions under Guardiola, but Chilean goalkeeper Bravo looked shaky on his Premier League debut.

The 33-year-old dropped the ball at Zlatan Ibrahimovic's feet for United's goal on 42 minutes and was perhaps fortunate not to give away a penalty in the second half for a meaty challenge on Wayne Rooney after losing possession in his own penalty area following a heavy touch.

But Guardiola, who signed Bravo from his former club Barcelona in August in a £17m deal, defended his summer signing and insisted that he will continue to instruct his sides to build from the back.

"We played good in the first half because of Claudio," he said.

"I like the keepers to attack the ball and after what happened, the second half he continued to play and that’s a good thing about his personality. He was one of the reasons we played well in the first half.

"Yeah [if you pass the ball from the back] it can be too risky. If you lose the ball they will score. But you can control the game.

"Until my last day in England I will try to play with the ball as much as possible. I know it's impossible for 90 minutes but I'm sorry, I will not negotiate that."

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho felt referee Mark Clattenburg should have awarded his side two penalties, one for Bravo's challenge on Rooney and another for a handball by Nicolas Otamendi just before the hour mark.

He told BBC Sport: "Mark made two big mistakes. Claudio Bravo is a penalty and a red card – if one of my players do that in the middle of the park - if Fellaini or Rooney do that in the middle of the park - it’s a red card and a free-kick.

"In the box it is more difficult to give and he didn’t want to give it.

"The second one is a handball by Nicolas Otamendi – some pundits will say no because it's the back of the arm but he knows. He' s looking at the ball. We are not happy with these decisions."

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