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Guardiola buoyed by improvement in final third

Guardiola buoyed by improvement in final third
Pep Guardiola says there are promising signs for City in front of goal after an unusually barren start to the season.

City have been sensational in front of goal since Pep took over in the summer of 2016, scoring an average of 95.7 Premier League goals a season during his four years as manager.

Indeed, the 102 we managed last season was the highest across Europe’s top five leagues, and the 106 we hit in 2017-18 remains an all-time Premier League record.

But this season has seen our golden touch elude us, with City scoring just ten in our eight league games so far.

Recent matches have seen more chances created, though, with the team managing 22 shots in the midweek win over Olympiakos, after managing 22 in last weekend’s defeat to Tottenham.

And ahead of Saturday’s Premier League game at home to Burnley, the boss believes they are promising numbers.

“What is important is in the last games we played we created much more than the opponent,” he said.

“Always you are closer to winning if you create more chances. One day we will score the goals, put on the table what we deserve. It’s time to put more players in the box, be positive and it will happen.”

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Asked if City just need one big win to hit goalscoring form again, Guardiola said: “Maybe.

“But maybe we do that and then don't create chances. I don't think this will change much one game where we score four or five.

“We need to continue the good feelings and tomorrow try to score goals.”

WATCH: City v Burnley: Guardiola press conference

Sergio Aguero’s recent return from injury has been a welcome boost for the manager.

The Argentine has played just 190 minutes of football this season after suffering a hamstring injury in our 1-1 draw at West Ham, having only returned from a four-month layoff the week before.

However, this week came the news of Diego Maradona’s death, with Argentina entering a three-day period of mourning announced by President Alberto Fernandez.

Maradona, one of the greatest players to grace football, was the grandfather of Aguero’s son, Benjamin, and Guardiola admits it must be a very testing time for the City striker.

“It’s difficult for me to talk about his feelings,” he said.

“I saw him good. It was hard, especially for his son. It’s tough, it’s normal. He knew Maradona well and his son it was his grandfather, it’s hard for his family.

“It’s a question for him, difficult for me to answer.”

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