Guardiola demands more consistency from his stars ahead of Canaries clash
PUBLISHED: 16:10 22 July 2020 | UPDATED: 16:10 22 July 2020
Pep Guardiola has demanded more consistency from his Manchester City players ahead of Sunday’s game against Norwich City - but the superstar manager was pleased with his team’s response to their FA Cup semi-final defeat to Arsenal.
The dethroned Premier League champions were surprisingly beaten 2-0 by Arsenal at Wembley on Saturday but bounced back with a comfortable 4-0 win at Watford on Tuesday night, dropping the Hornets into the relegation zone.
“They were playing for a big issue and we were aggressive in more senses,” Guardiola explained. “I said before, be ourselves. We can play better or worse but there is a minimum in desire and passion - and we showed it.
“You have to do everything to win the game. It is not about winning or losing.
“You can play bad, but you have to run and fight. It didn’t happen against Arsenal, that is why we lost.”
Liverpool may have claimed the top-flight crown but Guardiola’s expensively assembled galaxy of stars have out-scored the champions comfortably.
They also still have the Champions League to fight for, having won 2-1 at Real Madrid in the first leg of their last-16 tie back in February. The second leg will be played at the Etihad Stadium on August 7, before the final stages of the competition are all played in Portugal in a tournament style.
Before attentions can turn to that big European tie however Guardiola’s team host the Canaries (4pm), looking for revenge for the shock 3-2 loss at Carrow Road in September, which gave Liverpool the upper hand in the title race.
“I love when the players can achieve their desires and score the goals and have the commitment to score the goals,” Guardiola added, speaking to his club’s website. “We cannot forget we finished far away from the champions.
“This season was not good for us in the Premier League. Of course it is better than the other 18 teams, but it is not good enough.
“I think this was the first time we won four games in a row in the Premier League. Last season we won 18.
“That means we must improve our consistency.”