Pep Guardiola recently claimed that he is “happier than ever” with Manchester City, a claim backed up by the way the Premier League champions played against Liverpool at Anfield
The 2-2 draw, already being dubbed a Premier League classic, saw the Citizens twice come back from behind despite largely controlling the game at Anfield, a feat considered one the hardest tasks in football.
The match followed City’s convincing 1-0 win against fellow title hopefuls Chelsea last weekend.
Guardiola was evidently more than pleased with his side’s showings, something he stressed while previewing the trip to Anfield.
“The way we played the last two games makes me so satisfied with what we have done,” he told mancity.com.
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“Obviously, when we won the Premier League I am happy but in this period when we have had injuries and Phil Foden and Kevin De Bruyne trained for just two weeks, the level and consistency in those two games is so good.
“That’s why I am happier than ever.”
The Citizens boss added: “Words cannot express my sense of gratitude and my compliments at the way we played those two games. This is the target.”
Guardiola’s men subsequently put in arguably their best performance away to Liverpool with fans in the stadium since his arrival in 2016, having lost on four of their five visits before the global pandemic.
Although the Reds pipped City on expected goals, the away side took double the amount of shots that Klopp’s team managed to fire off, created more chances and – potentially less surprising – wrestled the Lion’s share of possession.
Goalscorer Kevin De Bruyne even claimed he ‘could not fault’ his team-mates’ performance as they capped an “amazing” week of displays against three top opponents.
Worthy of three points if not for Mohamed Salah’s magic, Guardiola was also delighted with how his side played and his impassioned celebration when De Bruyne levelled the scores for the second time, the first being Phil Foden, demonstrated his relief of gaining at least a point.
“We compete and play with incredible personality, I’m very pleased with the way we played, the result we cannot change,” the Catalan coach said.
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“The way we played in Stamford Bridge, Paris and here, shows we are a great team. When my team play the way three games – we cannot forget which team we played.
“Liverpool one of the best three teams in the world – you played with courage and personality like we have done – we played here at a good level. Today, we didn’t lose but the draw is good, we just need to continue.”
“The last two times we’ve been here we played with huge personality. I’m so pleased with that. The way we played the first half and last 15 minutes was devastating and really good.
“After they went 1-0 up, Anfield changes a lot. But we stayed in the game and we came back twice and I am incredibly satisfied.”
Guardiola continued: “It wasn’t easy after coming back from Paris – the way we played the first half and then we are losing 1-0 and 2-1 the doesn’t give you the title but massive satisfaction.
“The way the team lose a game shows me we are a good team. And the way we lost in Paris and came back today.”