Guardiola describes Premier League club as “pain in the ass” in title race

Pep Guardiola has laughed off suggestions his Manchester City side are in a league of their own and says ‘pain in the ass’ Liverpool are more than capable of beating them – perhaps even to the title.

The reigning Premier League champions looked to be running away with the title not so long ago but Liverpool have slowly started to get back into contention and would be just six points behind City if they win their game in hand.

Nevertheless, City’s form looks imperious – not losing since a dead rubber against RB Leipzig in December – and they put on yet another masterclass on Tuesday night in the Champions League.

The visitors ran riot in Lisbon against Sporting and will take a 5-0 lead back to the Etihad after Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva, Phil Foden and Raheem Sterling all got on the scoresheet.

City, who made the Champions League final last season, are favourites to do so again this year but Guardiola was quick to play down their dominance in a post-match interview with Peter Schmeichel on CBS.

The legendary Manchester United goalkeeper asked him: ‘On your current form, I mean you’re scoring nearly every chance even in the Premier League, what team out there can beat you?’

But Guardiola replied immediately: “Liverpool. They’re six points behind us. Liverpool have been our biggest rival in the last seasons and always was there. They are a pain in the ass all the time! So they’re a fantastic team in Europe.”

The Spaniard also listed other challengers in the Champions League, continuing: “Just take a look at PSG today, they told me they played really well against Real Madrid. And look at Inter Milan or Liverpool or [Manchester] United in this competition.

“So when you are now today in February they don’t assure you in April or May will be like we are right now. So in a long competition like the Premier League, when you win you are the best. You are the best.

“But in Champions League it’s [different]… our first goal, for a little margin, is a goal. Could be offside, but it’s a goal. And the difference in the next minutes, the next game, for that result, it changes everything. In the Premier League, no, but in this competition it’s like this.

“So that’s why today we were so good being so clinical. Arrive, score, arrive, score. And when this happens it is so difficult for any opponent.”

Photo Credit: ManCity/Twitter