Football

Guardiola: Man City need to be more prolific to compete for title

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola was frustrated by his side's profligacy in Saturday's 1-0 English Premier League victory at Southampton and has warned his players they must develop a killer instinct in front of goal if they are to mount a successful title challenge.

Raheem Sterling gave City an early lead at St Mary's but Kevin de Bruyne, Bernardo Silva and Riyad Mahrez all missed gilt-edged opportunities to drive home their advantage, a hallmark of City's season so far.

Guardiola's side have scored 19 goals in 13 EPL games, just over half of the 37 they had netted at the same stage of the previous campaign.

"Our goal is to try and win games, to be up there as quickly as possible, as close to the top of league," Guardiola said.

"But our momentum is not good up front. We will struggle if we don't break this situation and score more goals."

City are on 23 points, eight adrift of leaders Liverpool.

"We are far away... It's a lot of points. Liverpool have momentum. No doubts about how good they are," said Guardiola, whose side face Arsenal in the League Cup on Wednesday morning (Singapore time).

Despite the loss, the Saints are a point ahead of City, who have a game in hand, but manager Ralph Hasenhuettl will be sweating on the fitness of key striker Danny Ings.

"We played a better game than when we beat them in the summer. This time they scored and we didn't," he said.

On Ings, the Austrian added: "It is a hamstring problem... Hopefully, it is not too bad." - REUTERS, AFP

Football