City were forced to survive a late scare to hold on to a thoroughly deserved 2-1 victory over Watford. In what could have been a disastrous first half for Watford that could have seen City up 5-0, they held it together well well enough to scare the Centurions at the death.
The champions were easing towards victory, two goals up, when the hosts pulled a goal back in the dying minutes. From there on it was backs to the wall stuff in order to preserve what had suddenly become a slim advantage.
Anything other than a victory for the Blues would have been a disappointment given the chances created, but Watford gave it a good go and almost claimed an unlikely draw.
Still, City win and we are grateful!
On to the reaction-
Pep Guardiola Reaction
“We had the chances to kill the game and score a third and then maybe a fourth, but we missed them,” said Pep.
“It is what it is. We knew it. We are not new in this league and we know it happens.
“In the first half they had one clear chance, but we had many. We had three or four more chances after we went 2-0 ahead, when the game was under control.
“Then, okay, we start to lose balls and let them have the opportunity to come back into it.
“And of course, when they scored with 10 minutes or so to go, you suffer.
”We didn’t score the third, they made it 2-1 and in the last minutes anything can happen.
“In this league, you have to score the third goal and we didn’t do that, that’s why we suffered near the end.”
Despite the late Hornets rally, the Catalan was keen to highlight what had gone on before the Watford goal and the frantic last moments.
“We made a good performance,” he said.
”The game was really good, we were so aggressive, and we won a lot of balls.
“Foster made some incredible saves. After that we forget to be in the position and our build up was not as quick as normal and the chances we had to counter-attack, we missed.
“Now we try to recover our legs and minds and go to Chelsea on Saturday and play our game.
“We know how difficult it is at Stamford Bridge, but first, we must rest and recover.”
Riyad Mahrez Reaction
“You are not going to win every game 4-0 or 5-0. Going through these types of games makes you stronger,” said the Algerian.
“We played very well up until the second goal.
“After that we created more chances and tried to kill the game but in football when you are 2-0 up and the oppositions score, the crowd get behind them and it’s difficult.
“We are very happy to win and get the three points.
“Now we need to focus every three days. We need to be ready and at our top. Anyone in the top four can still win the league.
“Nothing is done and we need to keep working very hard for each other and the team and trying to win every game.”
Next up for Manchester City is an away trip to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea. See you then!