Pep Guardiola has told bitter rival Jose Mourinho: I feel sorry for you.
Mourinho has been fighting to save his Manchester United job for most of the season following a fall-out with Old Trafford chief Ed Woodward.
And there have also been public bust-ups with £89million buy Paul Pogba plus club legends Rio Ferdinand and Paul Scholes.
Ahead of today’s Manchester derby, City boss Guardiola was asked if he feels sympathy for his under-fire counterpart.
He said: “Of course. I admire not just Jose, but all the managers — especially when they have tough problems.
“The situation in which Jose lives, I lived in for some period in the past myself. But I want to beat other managers, it is not necessary to be friends.
“When they suffer I know I will be in the same position sooner or later.”
The two come face to face at the Etihad today.
Champions City are top, already nine points clear of their neighbours after just 11 games, with United outside the Champions League places.
Mourinho claims the pressure he is under is the “fault” of United’s legendary past success.
And Guardiola added: “We are both in a similar position in that the expectation on us is so high.
“We either win or we fail, always. We have to win all the titles we play for.
“If you are stable and you know what you have to do, the success and the good games are always coming up. Always.
“Especially at the good clubs.”