Raheem Sterling has singled out his defensive teammates for praise after indicating Ruben Dias and John Stones should take the credit for Manchester City’s amazing run of form.
City extended their winning run to 18 games in all competitions after Sterling’s second-minute header was enough to sink Arsenal 1-0 on Sunday.
It leaves Pep Guardiola’s men 10 points clear at the top of the Premier League table. On that sort of run, it’s easy to see why they’re favourites to land a third title in four years.
City have averaged two goals a game from their 25 league outings so far – a number only bettered by nearest challengers Manchester United.
But an improved defence has been the bedrock to their success. Indeed, summer signing Dias has forged a fine understanding alongside Stones and has seen the leaders concede just 15 goals.
“The two centre-halves, their partnership has been great this season,” Sterling told mancity.com.
“They have a great understanding – even with Aymeric [Laporte] there’s a really good unity and bond there.
“They’re trying to keep clean sheets and it’s a credit to them. It’s even better now because we had a difficult start to the season, it was something we’re not used to.
“We weren’t scoring as many goals as we’re used to and it’s a credit to the team that we started to dig results out. That’s the sign of a winning team that you have to dig results out.”
Sterling knows Arteta did his homework
Sterling also echoed the sentiments of Guardiola by praising Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta. Having previously worked as assistant at City, Sterling knew beating the Gunners would be tough.
“Mikel worked with us for plenty of years,” he added.
“He knows exactly our strengths and weaknesses and I wouldn’t be surprised if he spent plenty of time to see how to stop us and find gaps in our team – he made it difficult for us.”
“I think any team you go to now, you can lose the game. We have just got to keep our focus and onto the next one.”