Man City’s Success Creates Sky-High Demands, Says Guardiola

Saturday's result at the Etihad ended an 11-match winning run that began at the FIFA Club World Cup in December.

Manchester City’s Spanish manager Pep Guardiola (L) and Chelsea’s Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino speak prior to the English Premier League football match between Manchester City and Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England, on February 17, 2024. (Photo by Darren Staples / AFP) /


Pep Guardiola said Monday that higher expectations faced by Manchester City are the price of years of success as he prepares his men to face Brentford after a frustrating 1-1 draw against Chelsea.

Saturday’s result at the Etihad ended an 11-match winning run that began at the FIFA Club World Cup in December.

It left last season’s treble winners third in the Premier League, four points behind leaders Liverpool and two points behind Arsenal with a game in hand on both of their rivals.

Guardiola’s men enjoyed more than 70 percent possession against Chelsea and had 31 shots but were grateful for a late equaliser by Rodri on a day when Erling Haaland missed a series of clear chances.

But the City boss told reporters, at the eve of match press conference, he was satisfied with his players, denying he was feeling the pressure from in-form Liverpool and Arsenal.

“The last 15 games, we won 13 and we drew two and the two we drew we played to win the game,” he said.

“I know the standards we have created because of what we have done in the past,” he added. “I understand completely the doubts from people,

“What I am seeing I am more than satisfied. I give credit to Chelsea, who created problems… but in general, we were more than decent.

“But I know our standards and you demand our standards for what we have done in the past and I know it’s not easy to sustain it. For a long, long, long time we did it. Maybe for 11 months, it’s not easy but we are there.”

Guardiola, whose team are chasing an unprecedented fourth straight Premier League title, was asked whether the demand for perfection was the price of success after so many years of winning trophies.

“Absolutely,” he said. “I had the experience at my previous clubs, especially at Barcelona.

“It’s an honour, go for it but there will be no effect. We know and we have to continue doing what we try but it’s normal… I’m the first to demand myself the team do it for 95 minutes knowing that it’s impossible.”

Guardiola was asked his opinion about Kylian Mbappe after reports that City officials had met with one of the France captain’s entourage.

Mbappe has told Paris Saint-Germain he wants to leave the club, with Real Madrid expected to be his next port of call.

“I think he’s quite good,” Guardiola said in a deadpan manner. “He has a future. He’s really, really good.”