As his Manchester City recorded the 18th win in a row at Emirate Stadium, Pep Guardiola was full of praise for Mikel Arteta after Raheem Sterling’s second-minute header sealed a 1-0 victory, the City manager maintained that he was as delighted to win in such situations as when his side ran roughshod over the opposition.
Raheem Sterling headed home Riyad Mahrez’s cross to open the scoring but they were unable to add to their tally, although the visitors seemed in complete control of the contest as Arsenal had just one shot on target in the 90 minutes.
Pep said: “It was a really tough game. We didn’t have the players that we used to play and create our game because Mikel is so clever and they make man-to-man in the build-up.
“It was really difficult to find the right players to attack better but we were consistent again. We started incredibly well again and for 15-20 minutes was so brilliant.
“After they were better than us, we could not press, we could not have the ball and they didn’t create much but there were crosses.
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“We made a brilliant second half, it was so good. We are delighted for the three points because it is the Emirates, Arsenal away, and I know Mikel, how good he is and how well his team plays.”
Guardiola admits he knows he will inevitably see his side lose at some point and is more than happy to pick up 1-0 victories along the way.
“The record is going to be broken one day, we are going to lose one day so thinking about the next game is the only secret,” he added.
“I’m surprised and impressed and so when everyone is suffering in this world, all the teams in the league are dropping points we were consistent over the past two months and I did not expect.
“We cannot forget we won at Anfield, we won against Tottenham, at Goodison Park, and here, three incredibly tough away games in this period, which is why I’m more than pleased to win just 1-0.
“People talk and talk about the record and the victories but to do this you have to win these types of games many, many times. It is not always about winning by three or four because that is not possible.
“I would say we didn’t do more today because of the quality of the opponent, not because we weren’t good.”