The toughest title of my career, says Pep Guardiola
Manchester City clinched the Premier League title with the win required to finally end Liverpool’s relentless attempt to dethrone them as champions by crushing Brighton & Hove Albion 4-1 on the south-coast on Sunday.
Pep Guardiola’s City ended the season with 98 points, two shy of last season’s record-breaking 100, while Liverpool’s 2-0 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers saw them finish on 97 — by far the largest tally for a Premier League runners-up spot.
“We have to say congratulations to Liverpool and thank you so much — they pushed us to increase our standards,” Guardiola told Sky Sports.
“It’s incredible, 98 points, to go back-to-back. We made the standard higher last season and Liverpool helped us — to win this title we had to win 14 (league games) in a row. We couldn’t lose one point.”
The Catalan manager insisted: “It’s the toughest title we have won in all my career, by far.”
Guardiola now has two league titles with City, to go with the three he won in charge of both Barcelona and Bayern Munich.
Vincent Kompany said City’s title win was the “hardest” he had experienced. “Back to back... I think it was the hardest, most tough Premier League ever,” Kompany told Sky Sports.
“Liverpool was exceptional. I don’t meant to rub it in, it is what it is. They didn’t deserve to lose. It makes me so much more happy that we played such a great team all season. We had our backs to the wall, we won at the Etihad and today we were able to stay in front.”
Asked if he was aware of the score at Anfield when Liverpool scored early on, Kompany said: “Honestly I didn’t know. We heard the Brighton fans singing ‘1-0 to Liverpool’ just at the moment we conceded so we knew then but we’ve done it before.
“We were creating chances, finding the gaps, imposing ourselves. Though the pitch was slow I felt we were magnificent. We did everything we needed to do in a game such as today.”