LONDON. — Pep Guardiola is impressed Manchester City have already amassed 60 points this season, but he’s not willing to write off a title push from perennial English Premiership football rivals Liverpool.
City earned three points from their 24th game of the season on Wednesday night, taking down Brentford 2-0 through goals from Riyad Mahrez and Kevin De Bruyne.
The win gives City 60 points this season, 12 more than Liverpool who have two games in hand, and Guardiola was willing to admit he’s been impressed by how his side has performed.
“Liverpool have two games to play, then we see the gap — 14 games to play, many points to play for and more tough games like today,” Guardiola said when asked to reflect on the title race.
“Everyone is tough competition, but it is impressive at this stage to have 60 points – we have done incredibly well so far.”
Guardiola went on to discuss whether his City team is the best in the world, a claim made by his counterpart Thomas Frank of Brentford.
Guardiola said Manchester City “are not the best in the world” despite them extending their lead at the top of the English Premier League table to 12 points following victory over Brentford on Wednesday night.
Mahrez scored his eighth goal in seven games as they moved further away from second-placed Liverpool, who played Leicester City late last night. But Guardiola said he “does not care” for “stupid things” like praising his side for being better than the rest.
“In so many ways I’m impressed with (the players’) attitude,” he added. “They still have the desire in every game to do their jobs.
“Normally they are being complimented, being praised — ‘you are the best team in the world’ — these stupid things. You can be confused, but we are still normal.
“We are not the best team in the world. The best team in the world is Chelsea, the best team is Palmeiras. We are not the best and I don’t care. “We are in a good position, 60 points at the moment. We have to qualify for the Champions League because that is the most important target, then the Premier League and then arrive in the last few games fighting for the title. This is what I want to do.
“Now we spoke with the rest of the players eat, rest, train, eat, rest, train because in three days we are away and then we have to travel to Portugal for the Champions League and everyone has to be ready.”
European champions Chelsea, who currently sit third in the table, play Brazilian side Palmeiras in the Club World Cup Final tomorrow. That is a trophy Manchester City have never competed for because they have not won the Champions League in order to qualify. — BBC Sport.