‘Lies were told’ about my Man City exit – Barça’s Cancelo

João Cancelo has taken a swipe at Manchester City, claiming “lies were told” about him following his departure to Bayern Munich in January 2023.

The Portugal international had been key player for City manager Pep Guardiola but fell out of favour in the first half of the 2022-23 campaign.

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There were claims in the media that Cancelo was unhappy with teammates Rico Lewis and Nathan Aké because they were getting more playing time and that it was affecting the team.

Cancelo, who is on a season long-loan at Barcelona from City told ABola newspaper : “Lies were told! I’ve never been a bad teammate for them and you can ask either Aké or Rico. I don’t have any superiority or inferiority complex towards them, but that’s the manager’s opinion…”

Asked if he was saddened by those reports, Cancelo said: “I was because it wasn’t true. I think Man City were a bit ungrateful to me when they said that, because I was a very important player in the years I was there. I never failed in my commitment to the club, to the fans and I always gave everything.

“I remember a time when I was robbed and attacked and the next day I was playing at the Emirates against Arsenal. These are things you don’t forget, I left my wife and my daughter alone at home, terrified.

“People will only remember this because Mister Guardiola has much more strength than me when he says something and I prefer to keep to myself. I prefer to know that I am telling the truth, I feel fulfilled with what I did. I am a transparent person, I never lie.”

Cancelo, 29. said he has no regrets over leaving City in January 2023 despite the club going on to win a historic treble — the Champions League, Premier League and FA Cup.

“I live life in the moment,” he said. “Certain things dictated that I was loaned to Bayern Munich last year. I have no regrets, even if City won the Champions League. I feel like I made the right choice, that I went to a club that really wanted me, even before renewing my contract. It was a club that gave me a lot in the six months I was there. I dealt with great players and the club is spectacular.

“Then I came here [to Barcelona], lowered my salary and I’m not bothered by it in the slightest. This was the third time I was about to come to Barcelona and I’m finally here.”

Cancelo, who has expressed his desire to continue at Barça beyond this summer, claimed he holds no grudge towards City. “Life goes on and I wish everything goes well, because while I was there I enjoyed my football and the team,” he said.

“They remain the favourite team to win the Champions League.”

Cancelo is under contract with City until June 2027.