Pep Guardiola insists that Manchester City’s top-of-the-table clash with Arsenal will not be ‘decisive’ in the Premier League title race.
City host the Premier League leaders on Wednesday evening, with Guardiola’s side five points behind the Gunners ahead of their meeting at the Etihad.
City boast two games in hand on Arsenal and a win in midweek would put the champions in a strong position to overhaul the north Londoners, who have seen their lead reduced after three consecutive Premier League draws.
Guardiola accepts that this week’s encounter is ‘really important’ for his side, but has echoed the comments of Arsenal’s Mikel Arteta in insisting that the result will be decisive in the outcome of the title race.
“It is really important, but not decisive because there are many games to play for both sides. We can’t deny how important it is,” Guardiola told his pre-match press conference.
“Arsenal have always had incredible details about keeping the ball; the players they select for the club have big quality and skills. Mikel [Arteta] has brought them to a different level; they are so competitive and aggressive.”
“It is very important because we can get points and our biggest rivals this season will not.
“We have to focus on what we have to do. We’ve played them twice; they were tight games and really difficult.”