English Premiership

Guardiola sees positives in Arsenal defeat

2016-08-08 16:53
Pep Guardiola (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - While Pep Guardiola admits he would have preferred to have won his final pre-season game ahead of the new season, he felt there were a lot of positives to take from the 3-2 loss to Arsenal.

The Citizens started brightly enough with Sergio Aguero opening the scoring on the half-hour before Arsene Wenger's side bagged three second half goals to put the result beyond doubt.

Alex Iwobi (50'), Theo Walcott (73') and Chuba Akpom (86') were all on target for the Gunners, although the increasingly impressive young striker Kelechi Iheanacho had the final say for the Citizens with his 88th minute consolation goal.

After the match, a pragmatic Guardiola told the club's official website: "I saw many things that I like a lot. Our pressing, our solidarity. I would have preferred to win the game for our confidence but it's not about whether we are ready.

"We made a few mistakes in our build-up as except for the second goal that was the quality of the Arsenal players, the chances that we conceded were our mistakes.

"We have to improve that but if the solution was to play long balls, that would be easy. Four or five times building up we made clear chances."

Guardiola expressed his fondness for attacking down the flanks, and acknowledged the performance by his two wingers, Raheem Sterling and Jesus Navas who set up Aguero and Iheanacho's goals.

"The two goals came because we attacked the byline. It was two crosses; one from Sterling and one from Jesus. Today all the typical players go inside but I like to attack byline.

"Of course Sterling likes to play on the left but that is when it is good to know the players. The last two games he has played on the right and he did it really well."

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