Pep Guardiola admitted his players lagged behind in the hunt of the 2019/2020 EPL title, due to the fact that they couldn’t emulate the desire and drive shown by Jurgen Klopp’s men.
“Maybe we didn’t arrive with the same passion; Liverpool played every single game like it was the last chance they have,” Guardiola said.
“And maybe we didn’t get that moment, especially the key moments in the first part of the season. That is the reality, that we are so far behind. Liverpool were fantastic inconsistency throughout the whole season. We dropped points at the beginning of the season and Liverpool didn’t drop points.”
The EPL title didn’t just come like that, but a record accompanied it as this is the first time that a team wins the EPL with seven games left still to play and the Anfield Lords could go on to destroy a whole series of records set by Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City two years ago.
He however urged Citizens to keep their focus better in the future, Guardiola is well aware of the task his side face to regain the title next term.
“We’ll have to recover for next season, to be more consistent, and recover the points we missed this season. That’s the reality. Two years ago we were 25 points ahead of Liverpool, and now they are this distance ahead.”
It was visible to everyone has they had known the title was on its way to Merseyside for months after Liverpool opened up a huge gap before the pandemic. The Spaniard has challenged his men to take a bitter experience from them dropping their title..
“We have to take a little perspective, be humble, and say ‘not all the time we can win’,” he said. Then we must learn what we need to do to avoid this situation again.”
The former Bayern Munich gaffer is highly confident of a swift response from City next term, but the sky blue Manchester side still have something to salvage their season, making them concentrate on finishing this season on a high in the FA Cup and UEFA Champions League.
They next travel is to St James’ park for their FA Cup title defense in the quarter-finals on Sunday, and they still hold a 2-1 lead over Real Madrid from the first leg of their Champions League Round of 16 tie.
“Now we have I would say still five, six weeks of competition, especially Sunday with the FA Cup. It is important to get to the semi-finals of the FA Cup, get qualification for the Champions League, and after that the Champions League itself.”
“I’ve never thought ‘we can always win’, but we can say, the last 10 competitions we played as a club we won eight titles. That’s never happened before in this country. You cannot win all the time and always.”
Guardiola had one thing to blame for his team’s misfortune this season, as he blamed the absence of Aymeric Larpote who was injured through out most part of the season for City’s spluttering form.
“We missed one important central defender. That was a real big problem for us.” He concludes