Pep Guardiola heaped praise on Edinson Cavani for his stellar career at the pinnacle of European football as he previewed Sunday's Manchester derby.
Cavani joined Manchester United on a free transfer last summer after a glittering decade with Paris Saint-Germain and Napoli, during which he won 19 major honours.
The veteran striker has scored over 400 career goals and will hope to add to his tally as he makes his first appearance for United against cross-town rivals Manchester City.
Cavani missed December's 0-0 draw with City at Old Trafford with a knock but Guardiola is well aware of the threat the 34-year-old poses.
"They are so strong in all departments," said the City boss as he discussed United's qualities. "Defensively. Bruno Fernandes, the speed upfront with [Dan] James, [Marcus] Rashford, [Anthony] Martial.
"The experience of Cavani, a player I admire the most for what he’s done with his career.
"It’s Manchester United. ‘It’s a privilege to compete with them, to be in front of them.
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"Tomorrow is no exception. It’s our target to do what we’ve done later."
During the goalless draw with United in December, Guardiola opted to play two holding midfielders in Fernandinho and Rodri.
But the Spaniard insists his cautious approach to the last derby was due to respect, rather than because he is "scared" of United.
He added: "They know for all the times at Barcelona and Bayern when I played United I have an incredible respect.
"Some of the decisions depends on the circumstances, fitness, Covid, momentum. We take decisions for many reasons.
"The respect was always there from playing as a player at Old Trafford. I respect all the clubs and I respect United.
"Scared is not the right word to explain when I approach one opponent. Respect, but I can lose and win and I prepare the games to beat the opponents."
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