Pep Guardiola has admitted that he was worried Manchester United would stage a comeback in this afternoons Manchester derby, just like they did last season.
Last April Man City went into the final Manchester derby of the season knowing that a point would secure them the Premier League title, and they duly raced into a 2-0 lead in what looked like a title procession at the Etihad.
However, a Paul Pogba inspired Manchester United would score three unanswered second-half goals to ensure the champagne remained on ice for one more week as they came back to win the game 3-2.
Fast-forward seven months and City were back at home in the derby and once again found themselves 2-0 up against their Manchester rivals when Anthony Martial pulled a goal back from the spot after substitute Romelu Lukaku was felled in the box by City ‘keeper Ederson.
This time though, the Citizens would go on to win the game 3-1 after German midfielder Ilkay Gundogan scored a late decider, and speaking after the game, Blues boss Guardiola admitted that was wary of another United comeback.
“We wanted to play good in front of our fans and we know how important it is to play in this game. But we did well and that goal from Sergio Aguero helped us a lot after half-time,” Guardiola told BBC’s MOTD.
“Man United have this amazing quality so they don’t need too much to punish you. These kinds of situations can happen [the second goal]. We reacted so well. This time we didn’t concede another chance.”