Pep Guardiola admits Manchester City face a battle to overhaul Premier League leaders Liverpool but he hasn’t given up on the title just yet. The Catalan coach says Liverpool appear “unstoppable” at present after a perfect start to the season with eight wins from as many league games.
City are already eight points off the pace in second spot but Guardiola remains convinced his side can claim a third successive Premier League title.
Liverpool were seven points clear of City last season at the end of December but the Manchester outfit fought back and won the league by just one point, and Guardiola feels if they can go on a winning run they can close the gap and ensure they remain in contention going into the final stages of the campaign.
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“We are facing one team who are champions of Europe and didn’t lose one game,” he said of the challenge of battling Liverpool for the title. “It’s difficult. In some games we could win but we didn’t win. Our mistakes punished us a lot. During the season there are ups and downs. We try to get better and improve.”
City can put the Reds under pressure this weekend as they head to Crystal Palace on Saturday for the late kick off.
Guardiola’s side can cut the gap to five points before Liverpool take on fierce rivals Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday.
City have a number of injury issues to contend with but Guardiola hopes those problems ease over the coming months and his returning stars can provide a boost going into the second half of the season.
Defender Aymeric Laporte is expected to return by February at the latest following knee surgery.
Forward Leroy Sane was initially expected to miss the majority of the season with a cruciate ligament injury but his recovery is ahead of schedule and Guardiola believes the German may even be able to make a return in December.