Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on Sunday was far from satisfied despite a 3-0 win away to Huddersfield Town that saw his side cut Liverpool’s lead at the top of the English Premier League table to four points.
Liverpool’s compelling 4-3 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday heaped huge pressure back onto reigning champions City, but they were rarely troubled by a Town side that look a certain bet for relegation this season.
City’s first goal, a deflected strike for Danilo in the 18th minute, brought up their 100th goal of the season in all competitions, before Raheem Sterling scored a diving header from Leroy Sane’s cross in the 54th minute and Sane himself made it 3-0 with a calm finish just two minutes later.
For Guardiola, it should have been an afternoon of enjoyment as his side again proved their willingness to push Liverpool all the way this season.
However, the City manager has forged a reputation based on sublime performances as well as ruthless goalscoring and, on that basis, his team’s showing in West Yorkshire was not a success as the visitors never really clicked into gear on a day against a Huddersfield side who had parted company with manager David Wagner on Monday last week.
“During the season you have these kind of games,” Guardiola said. “It is important to win. We have scored many goals in all competitions, [but] the way we played, we didn’t deserve more than three goals. We will improve in the future.”
“We have to demand more from ourselves in every game and do our best, but sometimes it’s difficult,” he said. “Today, we are happy we have won, but after immediately we have to analyze. During the season you have games when maybe you are not in the top level and it is important to win these games.”
For the second consecutive week, Manchester City kicked off knowing Liverpool had already won their weekend fixture and that, consequently, the onus was back on them to secure three points as well.
Once again, Guardiola’s side managed to do that, following up the 3-0 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers with this showing and the City manager was more than happy to remind everybody that silverware is not handed out for another four months.
“One team has been better, but we’re in January and there’s many more games to play,” he said. “You don’t win or lose the Premier League in January. We have to focus on what we have to do. If Liverpool win, we have to win, and if Liverpool lose then we also have to win.”
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