Manchester City coach, Pep Guardiola has declared the club’s remaining Premier League games in the 2021-2022 season as a final after leading his team to beat Watford 5-1 on Saturday, April 23, 2022.
On the said date, relegation-threatened Watford visited the Etihad Stadium with the hope that they could get a point from the Premier League table-toppers. Unfortunately, Pep Guardiola and his team did not give room to the 19th-placed team to enjoy the game.
Before the first 45 minutes, Manchester City had already loaded Watford with three goals, two from Gabriel Jesus and one from Rodri. Kamara of Watford gave the visitors hope when he scored in the 28th minute. However, there was all they could get from the game.
In the second half, Gabriel Jesus scored two more goals to complete his 4th career hat-trick and help Manchester City to beat Watford 5-1. The win left Manchester City on the first spot on the league table with 80 points in 33 games, four points above second-placed Liverpool which still have a game in hand.
After the match, Pep Guardiola told reporters that the fact that Manchester City are currently four points above Liverpool pending the outcome of Liverpool’s league game against Everton has not changed anything.
If Liverpool lose to Everton in the Merseyside derby which will take place at Anfield later today, April 24, 2022, at 16:30, the title race is as good as dead and buried in favor of Manchester City.
But Pep Guardiola is not excited over such a possibility as he insisted that he still have five Premier League finals which are against Leeds United, Newcastle, West Ham, Aston Villa, and Wolves.
“Nothing changes. When we won against Brighton we were two points behind [before the game], now we’re four in front”, Pep Guardiola told Sky Sports after the 5-1 win over Watford. “Brighton was a ‘final’. We had another ‘final’ today and we won it. Now we have an opportunity to play a ‘final’ against Leeds.
“Nothing changes. We have to win all five games to be champions.
“We started with having a goal in the first minutes of the first half and second half, that was good. We didn’t defend well in the back, we were not aggressive enough. Defending is a question of attitude, it’s not a question of skills or abilities, and we were not good.
“But the players at the front, not only Gabriel Jesus for his incredible four goals, but Raheem, Jack, Kevin, all of them, they were brilliant.”
Pep Guardiola praises Jesus
Despite mentioning that the likes of Raheem Sterling, Jack Grealish, and Kevin de Bruyne played well up front, Pep Guardiola singled out Gabriel Jesus for more praises.
The Brazilian striker who used to play mostly from the bench due to his inconsistent form blew the minds of everyone with four beautiful goals. In the reaction of coach Guardiola, the coach said the Brazilian striker deserves the best life.
“If there was one person who deserves the best of his life for him and his family and friends, it’s Gabriel,” Guardiola said.
“All of us at the club and locker room, when he has one of these situations we are happy for him because he is so generous and it doesn’t matter what position he is going to play, he always fights, he always helps for his mates. It was fantastic.”
So far this season, Gabriel Jesus whose contract with Manchester City will expire on June 30, 2023, has scored 11 goals and provided 12 assists in 35 games in all competitions this season.
After scoring four goals against Watford on Saturday, the Brazilian told Sky Sports that it was his day, acknowledging the fact that he used Watford to score his first hat-trick in the Premier League.
“This was my first hat-trick in the Premier League”, he said. “I try it, sometimes I score two and hit the post, the defender blocks, the keeper saves. Today was my day. I am very happy with the three points, the team played so well this afternoon. We deserved it.”