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Pep Guardiola says Manchester City Premier League position not important right now
- Updated: January 27, 2021
Pep Guardiola calls for calm after Manchester City continued their fine form with a 5-0 win at West Brom; City are top after 11th straight win; league position does not concern Spaniard; Sam Allardyce believes ‘play to the whistle’ response for City’s second goal is ‘nonsense’
Pep Guardiola believes the Premier League title race will be a “marathon” and insists he does not look at the table despite Manchester City sitting top after their 5-0 win at West Brom.
Ilkay Gundogan’s first-half double and
goals from Joao Cancelo, Riyad Mahrez and Raheem Sterling eased City to victory at The Hawthorns.
City are a point ahead of Manchester United, although their rivals can reclaim top spot with victory over Sheffield United on Wednesday.
Guardiola’s side are the ninth team to top the table this season but, after an 11th straight win in all competitions, the Spaniard is keeping his cool.
“The last thing I’m thinking of is the table,” Guardiola said. “Now I want to come back home safely, have a few days off and Sheffield United [City’s next match] is all I’m concerned about.
“We still have 19 games to go in this incredible marathon. We are going to drop points and lose games but the important thing is to be calm, like we were when we were 12th in the table and understand why we didn’t win that game and immediately win the next one.
“This is all I’m concerned about now. It’s the Premier League, welcome, it’s so tough for everyone. You know it’s competitive but we have had a good run.
“Congratulations to the team, we could not leave our box for the first two or three minutes but the rest of the game was good.”
Even without the injured Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero, City were never troubled at The Hawthorns. It was 3-0 after half an hour when Gundogan grabbed his second, pinching the ball from Romaine Sawyers and breezing past Dara O’Shea to score.
Mahrez added a fourth in first-half stoppage time after Sterling’s searching pass. Rodri struck the bar from distance after the break and Sterling wrapped up the scoring in the 57th minute when he tapped in Mahrez’s cross. It was Gundogan, however, who was singled out for special praise.
“He has always showed this level, except in the first season because he had an ACL,” Guardiola added. “He has always showed an incredible personality. He is generous and a very nice guy.”