Pep Guardiola has admitted being a “little bit surprised” at Kyle Walker being left out of the England squad.

The right-back was not included by Gareth Southgate for the Euro 2020 qualifiers with Bulgaria and Kosovo. Guardiola, who dropped the 29-year-old for last season’s league games at Leicester and at home to Liverpool, yet he said: “I was little bit surprised at first. I’m not involved – we’ll respect the decision. Kyle is coming back stronger. I understand him and support Gareth. I’m pretty sure the players want to go to the national team.

“It’s happened, so we adapt. We have time with our family now with the international break. Come back and play as best as possible to come back to the national team.”

City were drawn with Shakhtar Donetsk, Atalanta and Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League. Under Guardiola City have never progressed to the semi-finals and the manager was asked how vital it is to win the competition.

“It’s important, I know it’s important and if it happens it will be important,” he said. “But I will be the same guy, I’ll wake up in the morning, work a lot, go to sleep as early as possible, eat good, take care of myself as best as possible and love the people I love.

“I’m going to do my best but it’s not going to change my life. When I say thank you to everybody for my time here it’s not going to change my opinion about this title or that title.”

Aymeric Laporte has been called up to the France squad. The centre-back is yet to make his international debut. “For me he is the best left-sided centre defender in Europe,” Guardiola said.

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