Didi Hamann: No excuses, Liverpool have to qualify and Arsenal are going nowhere without change

The Reds' legend grades Guardiola’s season and praises Mourinho’s ‘traffic’ skills


The season’s nearly over and we’ll finally know the top four by 5pm on Sunday. Chelsea and Tottenham were always on track, however, Man City, Liverpool, Arsenal and Man United have had their struggles throughout the campaign.

First off, there’s really no excuses for Liverpool. They simply have to qualify for the Champions League. It’s all in their own hands, they only have to beat an already relegated Middlesbrough and they should be beating them.

The Reds have had their problems recently against Crystal Palace and Southampton at home, but I believe they’ll get the job done on Sunday. Then their season can be described as ‘acceptable’.

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Arsenal on the other hand have been scrambling again to save their season, when it’s almost too late.

It looks like they’ll miss out and even if they win the FA Cup again, it will only paper over the cracks. It’s been a disappointing season.  If you get beat 10-2 over two legs (like Bayern Munich did to them in Europe) – there’s something wrong.

Even if by some miracle they get into the Champions League, you’ve got to change the manager or the personnel because I don’t see them moving forward. This is as good as Arsenal are and if they want to progress something needs to give.

Pep Guardiola gets a pass mark for his first season at Man City. He hasn’t had a huge impact on the transfer market yet and it’s going to be a big summer for him.

He inherited an old team and barring something crazy happening this weekend, he’s got them into the top four.

The Citizens have got some issues that need addressing, like the fullbacks are all past 30. Pep probably underestimated the injury problem Vincent Kompany had and has been let down by Nicolás Otamendi.

However, the younger players have improved under him. If you look at Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling, Guardiola has improved them this season. Pep’s done what he had to do.

He didn’t overachieve, but for the next three or four seasons I want to see City in the last eight of the Champions League every time. A big trophy is also must for Man City next season, but if they sort out two or three positions during the summer transfer window, then they’ll be the team to look out for next season.

Finally, the road Jose Mourinho has taken towards the end of this campaign has been the correct route.

A couple of weeks ago I said they had a better chance of getting into the Champions League via the Europa League than by the top four in the Premier League and he’s secured them that shot.

If United were to win two trophies and get into Europe’s premier competition than you’d have to applaud that.

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What do you think?