It took until the 62nd minute for both teams to register a shot on target as they cancelled each other out, before City were given a golden opportunity when Virgil van Dijk was adjudged to have upended Leroy Sane in the penalty area. After their pulsating clashes in the UEFA Champions League and the 4-3 thriller in the Premier League in 2018, this affair was more pragmatic with possession nearly equal and big chances also shared evenly. It was pretty surprising to see him take it, considering David Silva and Gabriel Jesus were on the field, and his recent trend of misses make you question why he took it.
City swept Liverpool aside 5-0 at Etihad Stadium but twice in front of The Kop, Liverpool exposed Guardiola's approach with a 4-3 league win in January that was more emphatic than that narrow scoreline suggests and a 3-0 victory in the Champions League quarter-final first leg in April.
'I think they did well, we did well, up until the penalty moment. It is so hard to defend so I am really happy how we did it. It's part of football - sometimes you score, sometimes you miss. They remain on five points, one place above the relegation zone.
"When we won 2-1 at City in the Champions League, they pushed us in our 18-yard box and we didn't know how to come out".More news: Prithvi becomes youngest Indian to score 100 on Test debut
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Mahrez avoided confirming whether he was City's designated spot-kick taker after Sergio Aguero was substituted by Guardiola and insisted the miss won't affect his confidence. Don't lose the ball in the wrong moment, otherwise you have a big problem. "We control it through Riyad, Bernardo, the guys to give the extra pass".
The game did not live up to expectations but, after suffering two chastening defeats at the same venue last season, Guardiola opted to play at a slower tempo this time in order to nullify Liverpool.
"It was easy to adjust because we made not too many mistakes at Napoli, but a massive one formation-wise".
After a blistering start from Liverpool, Pep Guardiola's side recovered and pressed the home side but they held on until the interval. "I would not like to speak about the referees, about the decisions", Guardiola said when asked by Pro Soccer Talk. "It shouldn't happen, but obviously very happy we didn't concede". We know this club how complicated it is playing in this stadium and how risky they are.