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Guardiola Urges Calm as City Chase Fourth Consecutive Title

Pep Guardiola at Man City
© Ace Football

Pep Guardiola has instructed his Manchester City players to “relax” ahead of their Premier League finale against West Ham on Sunday, a game that could secure their fourth consecutive league title.

A second-half brace from Erling Haaland ensured City’s 2-0 victory over Tottenham on Tuesday, moving them back ahead of Arsenal and keeping the title race in their own hands. Guardiola emphasized the importance of staying composed, drawing on lessons from both their own past experiences and Arsenal’s recent narrow 1-0 victory over Manchester United.

“They were playing for the consequences of the result [in the first half],” Guardiola said. “When you do that, you are going to lose the Premier League. You cannot perform to your level.”

Understanding the immense pressure, Guardiola acknowledged the human aspect of the game. “Not even Arsenal played well against Manchester United, knowing they had to win to stay in the title race. It will be the same on Sunday for us against West Ham. We will feel the pressure.”

Guardiola referenced past dramatic finishes to highlight the unpredictability and tension of title deciders. “Look at Aston Villa a few seasons ago [2021-22], 2-0 down with 15 minutes to go, and Sergio Aguero against QPR [in 2011-12], scoring in the 93rd minute. It is normal. That is why we talk and say everyone has to relax themselves and do what they have to do.”

City will clinch the league by beating West Ham, regardless of Arsenal’s result against Everton. “We know what we’re playing for. The tension is there, the rival is so good. It’s why it is difficult, we know that,” Guardiola added.

He called on City fans to create a supportive atmosphere at the Etihad Stadium. “Everyone come to the stadium and make noise. These games are more difficult, but you have to do it. We’ll have one day off, two days to prepare, and then we will do our best.”

As City approach the decisive match, Guardiola’s message is clear: stay calm, focus on their game, and the title will follow.