Pep Guardiola makes major admission about Liverpool fans after Man City win
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola believes Anfield is “completely different” without supporters and admits Liverpool are missing the backing of their fans.
City romped to a behind-closed-doors 4-1 win at the Premier League and world champions on Sunday afternoon to strengthen their grip at the top of the table.
The Reds are now 10 points adrift in fourth place and face a major scrap for Champions League qualification.
City’s win was their first at Anfield since 2003 and only their second triumph in 34 visits.
But Guardiola, for whom it was a first victory at the stadium, accepts it wasn’t quite the same as winning in front of a packed Liverpool crowd.
“It was important to get the three points,” said the City boss. “I’m so proud of the guys to be the guys who break the record after a long time.
“That shows how difficult it is.
“Hopefully next time we can do it with a similar performance with the spectators because Anfield, with people and without, is completely different.
“I could imagine after (Liverpool made it) 1-1 what Anfield could be like and the influence on their players.
“But it’s good how we reacted, especially after missing the penalty and conceding the goal.
“Nobody took a step back, we took a step forward with huge personality. Raheem Sterling had an incredible game. A phenomenal performance.
“We are grateful and happy for this victory, but tomorrow we will have our feet on the grass.”
City missed a third penalty in seven games against Liverpool when Ilkay Gundogan skied his first-half effort, prompting Guardiola to lament the lack of a specialist taker like Mohamed Salah – who scored the Reds’ goal from spot – and consider Ederson as a potential alternative.
“Six months ago it was a joke, now it’s a half-joke,” said the Spaniard.
“We don’t have a real specialist in this area unlike for example Salah, he is.
“In this kind of game when you miss a penalty it can punish you a lot, fortunately we could turn it over this time.”