Guardiola in Mazzoni’s shirt: “He was a legend”

After the big game game against Newcastle, the City boss shows off a T-shirt with the deceased coach’s famous quote: ‘I send a big hug to all his family’

It was a party at Etihad Stadium. But in Pep Guardiola’s voice there is a vein of sadness. City beat Newcastle 1-0, and celebrated the treble titles in their first home match of the season, in addition to the European Super Cup, which Seville won on penalties on Wednesday. Pep allows himself an honorable difference on the field with his players, but there is always something to make him sad. The reason emerges when he meets the press after the game: He’s not wearing the black suit he wore on the bench, but a white shirt with a friend painted on it: Carlo Mattson. A friend lost today.


“It’s a very sad day for me and my family – explains Pep in the press room at the Etihad Stadium, proudly wearing the white shirt -. Mr. Mazzoni (he says it in perfect Italian, although he speaks English, ed.) was my coach at Brescia, and unfortunately he passed away. Today. I send a big hug to all of his family, wife, children and grandchildren.” Then Pip opens the book of memories of the coach with whom he has remained very close since those years together in Brescia. “When I arrived in Italy, it was a difficult time for me. And he was like a father – he says, lights up -. Italian football has lost a legend, someone who had a huge impact on all the people he was with. I was in touch: I’m not just talking about the players Or chiefs, but for the entire football world. Send a big hug to all his family.”

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The white shirt with Mazzone over Pep is worn with pride, both in post-match TV interviews and those in the press room. The coach who died today at the age of 86 was pictured in one of his most iconic images, when in a Brescia suit he galloped under Atalanta’s curve for joy, with his team manager Eduardo Piovanni desperately trying to stop him. And Guardiola narrated that scene in 2018, while he was a guest at the Sports Festival. This time, after the match against Newcastle, he wears it with pride to remember his friend who is no longer there. “I remember that Eduardo Piovanni sent me this shirt a year ago – he said with a smile, looking at the shirt he was wearing – I thought it was the right day to wear it.”

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