Pep Guardiola backs Manchester City system following back-to-back defeats

Liverpool Team average- 7.36

Liverpool FC Liverpool Team average- 7.36

Such has been City's dominance that they are nearly certain to break a number of records by the time the season draws to a close.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola admitted he is at a loss to explain how conceding multiple times in short spells continues to cost his side.

But the derby comes just three days before the return leg of their European tie and Guardiola faces a hard balancing act, still believing he can overturn the Champions League deficit at the Etihad.

"We have to accept it and now we have [Manchester] United at home and then Liverpool at home". But we have done everything to win the game.

"Of course we are sad for ourselves, for our fans - but we still have 13 points advantage and goal difference".

In normal circumstances, winning a derby to secure the league title would be the undoubted focus, but Guardiola acknowledged that the return leg of their European quarter-final against Liverpool three days later is no less important.

Before United's second-half revival at the Etihad, City should have been out of sight. Not overturning their 3-0 deficit against Liverpool, though, would leave them to pick up the pieces of another failed campaign in Europe. "It would be wonderful, something different", he said. "The sooner we do it, the better".

Losing to United would upset fans, but is unlikely to be detrimental to City's season.

Liverpool's players certainly believe the atmosphere played a role in the outcome.

However, City's tendency to pay heavily for momentary lapses in concentration is a recurring theme of Guardiola's career.

Park the bus will ring loud and true but City must get through a stubborn backline and top goalkeeper if they want to win this one.

The 47-year-old, who has also managed Barcelona and Bayern Munich, was hired in 2016 after the Sky Blues finished fourth in the Premier League.

Perhaps the debacle at Liverpool is even more painful in a week that was supposed to be full of happiness at City since a victory against United this weekend will make Pep's team to new champion of the Premier League.

United and Mourinho ensured Guardiola and City were not having that moment at their expense.

"But we ran, we fought, we did everything, so in one month, two month or one or two years and we'll see the game and say 'wow, how could we lose that game?'" Our team is built to create and attack, that's why we made the decisions we did to go forward.

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