Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said his team have a point to prove against Liverpool.
City have enjoyed unprecedented domestic success over the last two seasons and despite already losing out on the title to Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, Guardiola has told his players there is still something to play for at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday.
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“In sport you have to prove every time,” Guardiola said at a news conference on Wednesday.
“We are incredibly satisfied with what we are doing. But for athletes it is never enough. Past is the past. We mention in our soul, our memories, but the show must go on. Some people will say I don’t have to show anything. I am completely the opposite. Every time you have to do it again.”
With seven games remaining, Liverpool are on course to collect a record points tally and win the title by a huge margin.
But despite the incredible numbers racked up at Anfield, Guardiola said the gap will not be insurmountable next season.
“I think we are not far away but you have to do a little bit more,” he added.
“They are a team that was better, who play at an outstanding level in every single game and we have to do more.
“Football helps you to understand an incredible education that another one was better and you have to try to reduce this gap.”
If City are to reclaim the title next year they will have to do it without Leroy Sane.
The winger is set to sign for Bayern Munich in a €50 million deal and despite not being available for the German champions until next season, the 24-year-old will not play for City again.
“We wish him all the best and give him a big, big thanks for all the years,” Guardiola said.
“He wants to leave. Everyone has his own life. I would love him to stay here but he believes he will be happier there.”