Pep Guardiola Criticizes Manchester City Players as Liverpool and Arsenal Gain Advantage

Liverpool and Arsenal have the opportunity to extend their lead over Manchester City in the Premier League title race this weekend. Pep Guardiola, the manager of Manchester City, has expressed his disappointment with his players after they squandered a two-goal advantage against Crystal Palace. Despite goals from Jack Grealish and Rico Lewis, Manchester City failed to hold on to their lead, conceding in stoppage time.

Roy Hodgson’s side, with a quarter of an hour remaining, managed to halve the deficit through Jean-Philippe Mateta. Phil Foden’s late penalty foul granted Crystal Palace the chance to equalize, with Michael Olise successfully converting the spot-kick. This result has given Liverpool and Arsenal the opportunity to increase their advantage over Manchester City in the Premier League title race.

While the season is far from over, Manchester City may come to regret falling short of their usual standards if their rivals continue to accumulate points. If Jurgen Klopp, Mikel Arteta, and even Unai Emery secure three more points this weekend, Manchester City could find themselves four points adrift of third place.

Guardiola expressed his frustration in an interview with the Manchester Evening News after the Crystal Palace game. He criticized his players for their careless display, stating, “At the end, be patient and don’t concede transitions and don’t concede like we have done in seven or eight years in these types of games. But of course, in the first action, they run and score a goal, and in the last minute, we give them a penalty.”

Guardiola emphasized the need for caution in the 18-yard box and lamented his team’s inability to close out games. He admitted, “We don’t deserve to win. It’s not bad luck, it’s deserved. We give away two points. When you give away this penalty, you deserve it. You see the chances we created and conceded; it’s quite similar to this whole season apart from the Chelsea game, but we are not able to close the games. That is the feeling.”

As the Premier League title race intensifies, Mikel Arteta, the Arsenal manager, is acutely aware of the significance of their upcoming match against Brighton on Sunday afternoon. Arteta stated, “We have to play against every team. The schedule means we have two big games coming up, and then we have the 28th and the 31st. It is what it is. This period is vital, and we will try to win every game. That’s for sure.”

When asked about the festive period, Arteta expressed his fondness for it, highlighting the opportunity it provides to spend time with family. He shared, “I really like it. It gives us the opportunity to bring family over. When we’re in Spain, it’s a bit different. I have great memories from those experiences as a player and as a manager too. This year it’s very rare because we’re going to have the 24th and 25th with no training session as well, which is very bizarre. But it’s good to spend time with my family this year, especially as I have young kids, and they’re really excited.”

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