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“Never at the start we think to win the league” – Pep Guardiola offers insight into Manchester City mentality as he namechecks Liverpool as main rival

Pep Guardiola reveals Manchester City's mindset ahead of new season and names Liverpool as main rivals
Pep Guardiola reveals Manchester City's mindset ahead of new season and names Liverpool as main rivals
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Varun Totadri

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has given an insight into the mindset of his team ahead of the 2022-23 Premier League campaign. He has named Liverpool as one of their main rivals for the title this season.

The Cityzens narrowly edged out the Reds in the race for the Premier League title last season by just one point. Guardiola's side have won four of the last five Premier League titles.

Manchester City have made some statement signings this summer and have had a number of big names leave the club. The league champions parted ways with Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus, and Oleksandr Zinchenko, and have added Erling Haaland, Julian Alvarez, and Kalvin Phillips to their squad.

However, Guardiola's side endured a disappointing start to the 2021-22 campaign as they suffered a 3-1 defeat to Liverpool in the Community Shield last week. Despite being one of the favorites to win the Premier League title this season, the Spanish tactician has insisted that his side never "think to win the league."

The former Barcelona boss expects Liverpool to be their main rivals. The former Barcelona boss has also warned his side against having a slow start to the campaign. Guardiola said, as per Liverpoolecho:

"Never at the start we think to win the league. We don't need the perspective to see what we've done is massive. How the players move. The rivals, mainly Liverpool, we've won four in six years, we are incredibly proud.
"I'd like to say loud how good we've done. We travel tomorrow to London and do a good game in West Ham, always we struggle in beginning of the season. We try to avoid it, we have long weeks of preparation, every week we get better.
"Be competitive, be consistent. I know what we can do. We want to make the next step in the way we play and this is the desire to do it."
⬅️ Gabriel Jesus ⬅️ Raheem Sterling⬅️ Oleksandr ZinchenkoPep Guardiola admits that Manchester City will miss the trio who have been so important for success at the club in recent years. https://t.co/Fb3eVye7zW

Liverpool have finished as runners-up behind Manchester City in two of the last four seasons, and won the 2019-20 Premier League title.

The Reds have added Darwin Nunez, Fabio Carvalho, and Calvin Ramsay to their ranks. Their convincing victory over City in the Community Shield will give them the confidence required to start the league season on a high against Fulham on Saturday.


Manchester City and Liverpool's new strikers could determine the Premier League title race this season

Manchester City v Liverpool - The FA Community Shield
Manchester City v Liverpool - The FA Community Shield

Manchester City and Liverpool have made a number of changes to their front lines over the last few months. The reigning Premier League champions lacked a world-class No. 9 last season and often deployed Kevin de Bruyne and Phil Foden in the role.

Pep Guardiola's side have signed Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund. The Norwegian is widely considered one of the best young strikers in world football at the moment and is expected to be a difference maker at the Etihad Stadium.

The youngster endured a disappointing debut for City against Liverpool in the Community Shield as he missed a number of opportunities and was bullied by Virgil van Dijk. However, he is expected to score at least 20 goals this season as he is likely to be the focal point of City's attacks.

Pep Guardiola has no worries about Erling Haaland #mcfc manchestereveningnews.co.uk/sport/football…

Liverpool signed Nunez from Benfica for a club-record fee of £85 million. The Uruguayan is seen as a replacement for Sadio Mane, who left the club to join Bayern Munich this summer.

Mane was one of the Red's standout players last season as he scored 21 goals in all competitions. Nunez will therefore have a key role to play this season.

He enjoyed an impressive game against City in the Community Shield, scoring their third goal in the 3-1 win. Haaland and Nunez's goals and impact on their respective clubs' performances could determine the title race this season.


Paul Merson has predicted the results for Chelsea vs Tottenham and other GW 2 fixtures! Click here

Edited by Akshay Saraswat
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