Written by Dan Davis (@dan_davis20)
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola lavished praise on his side after the title-chasers edged to victory at Bournemouth, and described their showing as ‘one of the best performances we’ve ever played’.
The visitors enjoyed 82% possession at Vitality Stadium, and edged to a crucial three points after Riyad Mahrez’s 55th minute strike.
Such was the dominance of City’s performance that their opponents were unable to record a single shot on goal throughout the clash.
“The reason why is we played incredible,” Guardiola admitted in the wake of the victory.
“We made an incredible performance today, one of the best performances we have ever played. Because to attack 11 players in the box, every pass is one sense and we didn’t concede one shot on target.
“This shows how they [City’s players] are committed, in set pieces defensively, throw ins, free kicks, corners, the second balls. Every time we lose the ball we have three or four guys going there to pick up and recover the ball and play.”
The Spanish tactician also labelled the Cherries ‘incredibly well organised’, with the host’s five-man backline managing to frustrate City on multiple occasions.
Guardiola added: “There were really no spaces, and we found them. We created a lot of chances and that’s why, apart from to win the game, we are close to Liverpool to try to the end to win the Premier League.”
The City boss also admitted delight with his side’s character, with the blue half of Manchester now two points clear at the division’s summit:
“I don’t know what’s going to happen at the end of the season, but these players deserve all my admiration, all my respect. It’s incredible how good they played today. It’s same like West Ham, West Ham had four chances in six minutes, but you either score on goal and the game would have been completely different.
“But apart from that they are focused, so West Ham only had one shot on target. Today there were zero shots on target.
“We always create more than the opponent, and the way they help each other, the way they play, it’s fantastic.”