Men's Team

Guardiola calls for Newcastle focus after Chelsea loss

Guardiola calls for Newcastle focus after Chelsea loss
Pep Guardiola says Manchester City must focus on our next game against Newcastle United and not dwell on missing out on the chance to win the Premier League title after our defeat to Chelsea.

City needed to win against Thomas Tuchel’s side in order to be crowned champions, but fell to a 2-1 loss against the team we will face in the Champions League final at the end of the month.

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Raheem Sterling gave City a 1-0 lead at the break and it might have been greater but Sergio Aguero saw his Panenka penalty saved by Edouard Mendy and the visitors took full advantage of the reprieve

Hakim Ziyech equalised with a smart finish on the hour mark and Marcos Alonso netted a 90th minute winner to complete a frustrating evening for City, but Guardiola insists his players must move on.

“In general, the performance was good,” the boss said at his post-match press conference.

“We are sad because we lose - we wanted to close the Premier League today - but we have to be focused. Football is unpredictable and we have to focus on the game at Newcastle.

“I will not start thinking about the action and another one and another. It will never end. Everyone made a good contribution and we were incredibly focused.

“First goal, we didn't block the shot well and the second we did not defend the penalty spot. There were many things but in general the game was good against a top side.

“Now we have six days, more than ever in this season. We will rest and then prepare for our final at Newcastle.”

WATCH: Guardiola: Champions League final a different game

In a keenly fought contest, City were the better team in the first half and would have been in a commanding position had Aguero converted his spot-kick on the stroke of half-time.

Guardiola admitted it would have changed the complexion of the game and though Chelsea capitalised on the missed opportunity in the second half, he did not feel the contest was decided in that moment.

“We don't know what would have happened in the second half,” he added.

“Many things happen. We cannot deny 2-0 at half-time is very different. We suffered a little bit in the second half but when Ilkay Gundogan and Phil [Foden] came on we were better - but they scored a goal.

“If he scores you would say he is a genius. I say to the players to take one decision. Panenka, right, left. Pick one.

“He is a sensible guy, we are not going to talk about what Sergio has done for all the period he has been here.

“He took the decision, no one expect it, but if he was convinced, do it. If he thinks that's best, the taker has responsibility.”

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