Pep Guardiola explains why Man City were unable to beat Aston Villa; expects tough PL season


Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says his side played a “good game” but “were not precise in the final third” following their 1-1 draw with Aston Villa.

Pep Guardiola’s side were left frustrated as Steven Gerrard’s side made Manchester City pay for their wastefulness in front of goal.

City failed to register a shot on target in the first half but Erling Haaland opened the scoring after half-time as City looked sharper and hungrier.

However, the likes of Haaland, Riyad Mahrez and Phil Foden failed to take make the most of the opportunities City created and with 15 minutes left Villa equalised through Leon Bailey.

Villa looked to have sealed a shock victory when Philippe Coutinho netted late on but the Brazilian’s effort was chalked off for offside.

The result leaves the Etihad outfit one point behind table-topping Arsenal, with the Gunners set to face Manchester United on Sunday.

Speaking after the game Guardiola was fairly pleased with his team’s efforts, but was frustrated by their sloppy finishing.

“Defensively, I like everything. Good game. We conceded just one from one shot on target in 90 minutes.

“Offensively, in the final third, normally players who are so precise missed a lot. We were not precise in our final third touches and our simple things, especially in the first half. We had chances to score a second when the game was in our hands but didn’t.”

“We were better after the goal. But we were just not precise enough in the crosses. We missed a few situations and that’s why we could not score.”

Manchester City enjoyed the majority of possession at Villa Park. But they came up against a side determined to put on a better show after recent poor results.

And the Spaniard acknowledged that the opposition were a handful throughout the game.

“They [Villa] defended well, they are well organised and physical,” he added. “The way we defended we created enough chances to score goals, we defended well apart from one action.”

City remain unbeaten in 2022-2023 and are level with Tottenham on 14 points. Great rivals Liverpool are down in sixth with nine points to their name after a goalless draw with Everton on Saturday.

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