Pep Guardiola reserved judgement on the sanctions imposed on Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich but sympathises with Thomas Tuchel and his players.
The Manchester City manager is no stranger to being in a position of tackling off-field issues in public and Chelsea’s season is now dominated by Ambramovich’s suspension on doing business in the UK.
Guardiola spoke just hours after the Government’s announcement and refused to be drawn on any impact the developments may have on the Premier League.
He said: ‘I don’t have an opinion sorry. I saw headlines but I don’t know exactly what happened. Give me a few more days to understand exactly what has happened.
‘I don’t know what is going to happen. It’s an uncomfortable position for the players and for Thomas Tuchel. I feel sorry for them because they are there to do their jobs.’
The Manchester City boss went on to say: ‘We are the face of the club, we are here every few days. You have to understand there are subjects we don’t know and don’t have an hour lesson to speak and talk about.
‘I prefer – when I don’t have a knowledgeable opinion on a subject – to wait because I don’t want to say something uncomfortable for that club.
‘I can talk about my club, more than comfortable. Last week I couldn’t talk about United, I’m not there. Same with Chelsea.
‘The position for Chelsea manager and players, I don’t know what’s going to happen. I prefer when I don’t have knowledge, wait and this is what I have to do. I don’t want to say anything uncomfortable for Chelsea or our club.
Guardiola claimed he would be ready to discuss Chelsea in more depth once he has sat down with City chief executive Ferran Soriano.
He added: ‘It looks like we have to know absolutely everything. We are human beings. I don’t know.
‘I talk about Ukraine. This situation, why he’s banned, I don’t know the reason why. I don’t know, maybe next press conference I have a clearer opinion, speak with my CEO to see the exact reason why.’
Meanwhile, the 51-year-old also reserved praise for teenager CJ Egan-Riley after the right back’s impressive European debut during Wednesday’s goalless draw with Sporting Lisbon.
Egan-Riley started after Joao Cancelo was struck down with illness, with Kyle Walker serving a suspension.
‘CJ’s situation was exceptional because we had some problems,’ Guardiola added. ‘He took the opportunity, didn’t make any mistakes and as a defender that has huge value.
‘He is not the tallest, the quickest but he doesn’t do mistakes, with the ball he’s always correct.’