Pablo Zabaleta aims parting dig at United in farewell speech

Sergio Aguero starts but John Stones is on the bench for Manchester City in this evening's important Premier League clash against West Bromwich Albion at the Etihad Stadium.

He said: "If next season is not going well, I'll have one more year of contract and, if it's not going well, they are going to change manager".

"I will not say fourth position is done, but Arsenal have to win by five or six against Everton and my good friend Ronald Koeman", City manager Guardiola told reporters at the Etihad Stadium.

The Argentinian, who announced at the weekend he is leaving the club at the end of the season after nine years' service, arrived to a hero's reception as a second-half substitute.

"We are third in the table and it is in our hands, so it is the best thing". It was like "wow" that for a long time I didn't see. For me, we couldn't let people say something like that about us. Maybe next season hopefully we can do better. "It's a real final for us, and we are going to be ready".

Speaking about the fact that he is to end the season without any silverware, Guardiola made a frank admission that had it been the case at the two other clubs he managed, he would have been given the boot.

City captain Vincent Kompany has led the tributes to Zabaleta, telling reporters: "He epitomises what the fans have loved about City for so many years, even before our era".

Just get the win, lads. He's an exceptional professional and someone who has been extremely reliable.

"If you need to go to war in the big games, you know you've got Zaba with you".

"He didn't score, but he helped us to play the third man, he made two or three assists".

The 46-year-old referred to his stints in charge of Barcelona and Bayern Munich with the relentless pressure they brought, but thanked City for giving him "a second chance".

The Argentine came on for David Silva in the 62nd minute of City's 3-1 win over West Brom in their Premier League clash for an emotional farewell to the home support.

But this kind of transfer rumour never disappears, and that's why when interviewed by Cadena Cope on Tuesday, the player was asked about Barcelona and Pep Guardiola.

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