Manchester City: Pep Guardiola will not apologise for asking more fans to attend Southampton game

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Guardiola: I will not apologize for the fans comments

Pep Guardiola said that he won't apologize for inviting more Manchester City fans into the Premier League match with Southampton.

According to the City manager, he would like to see more people at Etihad Stadium on Saturday for the Saints visit.

Guardiola insists that his plea was not misinterpreted, despite being criticized by club fans.

On Friday, he stated that he was disappointed that the stadium wasn't full.

"An interpretation can be interpreted as such. I will not apologize. We both know how difficult the last season was and have agreed to do something together this Saturday.

"It doesn’t matter how many people come, I still enjoy them. They misunderstand me after five seasons. "I won't apologize."

City's Champions League home games have had lower attendances than Premier League matches.

The Etihad Stadium has a capacity of 55,000, and the crowd against RB Leipzig was 38,062. The away section was virtually empty on Wednesday.

The attendance at City's home league matches against Norwich (51 437) and Arsenal (52,276) was close to capacity.

"If it is a problem for fans I will step aside."

A leading City supporters group called Guardiola's comments following the Leipzig match "disappointing" and "uncalled for" on Thursday.

Kevin Parker, general secretary for City's official supporters club, stated that although attendance is not a fact, they are usually excellent.

"Guardiola doesn't get the difficulties some people may have in getting to a game at 8pm on Wednesday nights."

Guardiola passionately claimed that he wouldn't criticize City fans for not being able to attend games.

"I am completely grateful for the support we had against Leipzig," said the 50-year old, who celebrated 300th games in charge by winning a convincing 6-3 victory over the Bundesliga side in their Champions League opener.

"I always tell guys that if they want to come, we will be incredibly thankful because I know how hard the game is and I know that we need our people.

"I don't sit here and wonder why people don’t come. Don't ask if you can't attend.

"If it causes problems for fans, I will resign. Since day one, I have done my best. I enjoy playing at the Etihad together with my fans... My intentions are to be part, and to do it together.