Pep Guardiola stated it would be “crazy” for Manchester City to think about retaining the title due to the deficit to Liverpool, which is eight points after Tuesday’s win at Burnley.
The champions won 4‑1 and were back to their most impressive as two Gabriel Jesus goals and one apiece from Rodrigo and Riyad Mahrez were answered only by Robbie Brady.
If Liverpool beat Everton on Wednesday their lead over City will again be 11 points. Guardiola joked initially when asked about City’s chances of again being champions.
“The title is over,” he said. “Nobody gives us a chance. Like everyone says, we are out, we have no chance. We are thinking [only about] ourselves and the next game.
“Our team is stable and that’s what we want. For the distance we are behind Liverpool it would be crazy to think about the title, we have to think about the derby [on Saturday], the other competitions we have, and take this rhythm forward. To think how many ways [we can get] close to them is a stupid way to think. We are thinking about ourselves and the next game – [take it] game by game.”
Guardiola also praised Rodri after the midfielder caught the eye. “He was incredible for his physicality, and [also for] the way he trains, how he wants to learn. It’s nice to talk tactics with him. He gives his opinions about the way he plays,” the manager said. “He’s perfect for this league, and I think Man City bought an incredible player for the next years.”
The win begins a packed December as City play seven more times. “It’s a crazy month but we are going to try,” Guardiola said and who was informed Liverpool have nine matches to play. “Last year we played 10 games, more than Liverpool, so they are in debit. It is what it is.”
Next for City is the 179th Manchester derby with United, at the Etihad Stadium. “We need our fans for Saturday, we have four days [until then]. Tomorrow we watch United’s game against Tottenham and see the way we can do it. To play these games is the reason why we are here,” the manager said.
Sean Dyche was disappointed at his muted Burnley side. “First half we tried to keep it tight,” he said. “They scored a worldy [Jesus’s first] and in the second half we didn’t turn up at all. We didn’t lay a glove on them physically.”
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