Guardiola: Man City's Target Now Is Top Four, Not EPL Title

"I know this manager from when he was in Greece", he told press before meeting Silva's side. "They have hard games coming up, though, so we have to keep winning and, hopefully, they get a bit stressed". But we have to be honest with ourselves. "We dominated the game".

"I feel like we're better now so it is a more interesting year for me as a manager to grow and handle this kind of situation. When you face that combination it's very tough". "It was a lesson for me this season", he said ahead of City's clash with Hull City on Saturday. "Because I think that the pressure gives you the best of yourself". "We accept it", he added.

City are fourth in the league following defeat at Chelsea on Wednesday, all but ending hopes of a league title in the Catalan's debut campaign in England. "It's important to go game by game".

He said: "They won't with eight or nine players - they will play with 11, like us".

The Tigers have not won a single game in 14 away matches, taking only two points from a possible 42. "We have to go on in this way, game by game and stay concentrated".

"We must think that Tottenham can win all the games".

He added: "We have a lot of handsome things to fight for and to qualify for the Champions League will be a huge success. I believe that we can win every game if we play like today - and then we'll see". "It's important to understand this to compare the teams in the right way".

However, Conte did agree that the battle for the title was now a two-horse race involving his side and London rivals Spurs. "We're just keeping going". We were the better team by far, by a country mile. They have players with a lot of talent and I admire the way they want to play.

Guardiola has vowed to improve in 2017-18 but admits he is hugely frustrated that he failed to act on concerns he spotted in the 6-0 aggregate win over Steaua in the Champions League play-off round.

Diego Costa has now gone five Chelsea matches without a goal but it was his shot that Smith deflected in and he went close twice more.

According to Conte, the substitution for purely tactical, rather than performance-based.

"You have teams that you know before the game that you can score, or that it's your team", said Hazard.

The Spain worldwide has been the side's creative fulcrum since being signed by Roberto Mancini from Valencia in 2010 and Guardiola is surprised his compatriot has not enjoyed greater recognition having won every major honour in the English game.

However, Eddie Howe and Bournemouth may have other ideas.

  • Salvatore Jensen