Pep Guardiola said Manchester City produced their best performance of the season after the champions avenged their loss to Chelsea in the Champions League final with an impressive 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge.
City, who face Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday and Liverpool next weekend, dominated against the European champions and deservedly won thanks to Gabriel Jesus’ goal in the second half. Chelsea have been outplayed and Guardiola, who surpassed Les McDowall’s record of 220 wins as City manager, believes his side have more to give.
“I would say this season,” he said after being asked if this was City’s best performance in the past six months. “In the last few months we’ve had a lot of good games, otherwise you can’t win the Premier League and be a Champions League finalist. It’s amazing what these players have done. People say the Champions League was a disaster. We played 13 games, won 11, drew and lost one. When that happens it’s exceptional, it helps us and now we’re going to Paris to play. I have a feeling the players are here and want to have another good season.
Guardiola was happy with Jesus after the Brazilian scored the only goal. “Gabriel is a person or a player who deserves the best,” he said. “He’s a guy who runs and works for everyone, and every time he scores I’m the happiest man. He can play in front in all three positions and he does them all very well.
“We know in the past how aggressive Chelsea are in duels. But you have to deal with it at this level. And Gabriel, he come down, but he got up – and got up to try again. And that’s why he’s one of the best signings we’ve done together during that time at City. “
Tuchel admitted that Chelsea, who visit Juventus in the Champions League on Wednesday, were second best. “We lost the game and I think City deserved to win,” said the Chelsea manager. “Until the goal, we were very, very strong in the last 20 meters of the pitch, but only there, unfortunately, and there are still 80 meters where we were not good enough today to escape the pressure, to have possession of the ball – not just possession of the ball to breathe, but possession of the ball to change plays, injure them and gain confidence. We weren’t at our best, and you need your best to push a game like this to your side.