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Pep excited by City squad

ALL WRAPPED UP: Fernandinho celebrates with his team-mates after netting City's fourth goal

ALL WRAPPED UP: Fernandinho celebrates with his team-mates after netting City's fourth goal

Boss Pep Guardiola has described his Manchester City squad as among 'the best groups I have worked with' after the Blues wrapped up a third-place Premier League finish and Champions League qualification.

City signed off the 16/17 season in style by putting five past Watford at Vicarage Road with Vincent Kompany, Sergio Aguero (two), Fernandinho and Gabriel Jesus on target.

And although third place was not the goal at the start of the season, Guardiola feels the side are in a good position to progress in 17/18.

After the UCL-confirming win Guardiola said: "We were under a lot of pressure. Congratulations to Chelsea and to Tottenham, we are so glad to be third.

"Next season Arsenal cannot be in the Champions League, it shows it is complicated.

"We made good things during the season. You are judged on results. The gap is too big, we have to play better to be close to them. We are going to try.

"It is not a club with history of playing in Europe like United or Arsenal. But now we are there five or six years and now we can try to close the gap on the elite.

"The best teams in Europe will be at the Etihad next season. I don't know what we need to add. This is one of the best groups I have ever trained, they never gave up. It was a pleasure to be with them."

Guardiola explained what he said to Yaya Toure as the Ivorian was substituted off, with the two exchanging warm words on the touchline at the culmination of the campaign.

The boss added: "I said thank you to Yaya Toure. He has played amazing and especially when we were in trouble in games. It is not easy to find that. When the game is not good the big players have the personality to want the ball and play.

"Whatever we will say to the players about their future will be to them, not to you. I know the Premier League better now, I regret that we could not fight until the end. One or two opponents were stronger."

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