Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Guardiola explains why Man City mean more after analysing tough test

Pep Guardiola pointing from the touchline

Pep Guardiola said he takes more pleasure from winning with Manchester City than his previous clubs after analysing further progress on the European stage.

Man City are top of Group A in the Champions League after beating Club Brugge 4-1 in their fourth game. Phil Foden scored in the first half before a John Stones own goal levelled things up. But in the second half, Riyad Mahrez, Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus sealed the win for City.

It marked a return to winning ways for Guardiola’s men after their elimination from the Carabao Cup at the hands of West Ham and Premier League loss to Crystal Palace recently.

With the Manchester derby next up, the victory came at an ideal time.

In the bigger picture, it put City on the verge of qualification for the Round of 16.

Their manager thought they were good value for the three points and is now looking to secure the ones they still need for qualification.

He told BT Sport: “Fully deserved. In the first few minutes we scored a goal but after conceding we dropped a little bit.

“The second half was really good. A good game, good victory. We need one point to go through, three points to win the group.”

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In the other group game, Leipzig earned a late draw against Paris Saint-Germain, which ensured City went top of the group.

Guardiola insists his side have been making their own luck, though, and reiterated how satisfied he is to win things with the club.

He said: “We help each other. What we’ve done these years… when you’re at Manchester City, you realise nobody will help you.

“Everything to do, we’ve done it. When you’re in high ranking and big clubs, I understand maybe. Here no. When we win, we do it.

“All the titles I won before were because I was at big clubs. Absolutely, the pleasure is higher [in winning things with City]. The fight to win the hierarchy in the Premier League is good.”

Prior to the game, Guardiola said this game would be more important than Saturday’s battle with rivals Manchester United.

The scoreline suggested a routine win in the end, but Guardiola once again showed his respect for the opposition when acknowledging how his own side worked for the win.

He added: “Every game is tough. They changed the shape we played in Belgium.

“We played really good football. I liked how we played.”

Laporte looks back on win

John Stones and Aymeric Laporte trying to win the ball

One of City’s starters on the night, Aymeric Laporte, agreed with Guardiola that it was a tough game.

The defender told BT Sport: “It was tough. We’re very happy with the result.

“It’s always difficult in the Champions League. Club Brugge are a good team. They gave us a lot of difficulties.”

Laporte relished the opportunity to partner John Stones at the centre of defence after both have usually been competing for each other’s place.

He said: “I’m very happy to play alongside John. We’ve known each other a long time and we’re happy to play together. There isn’t many times we play in the same game.

“I’m happy today for the win.”

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