October 27, 2017 / 3:33 PM / 22 days ago

Guardiola wary of complacency

LONDON (Reuters) - Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is experiencing deja vu after another successful start to the season and is concerned that his team do not fall away like they did a year ago.

Soccer Football - Carabao Cup Fourth Round - Manchester City vs Wolverhampton Wanderers - Etihad Stadium, Manchester, Britain - October 24, 2017 Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola gestures REUTERS/Andrew Yates

Last season City won the first six Premier League games and were being prematurely crowned champions in some quarters before ending up third.

This time they have won eight and drawn one of the first nine matches to lead the table by five points, as well as maintaining a 100 percent record after three Champions League ties.

Requiring a penalty shootout to beat Championship (second tier) club Wolverhampton Wanderers in the League Cup on Tuesday was a reminder that nothing should be taken for granted, said Guardiola.

“You realise last Tuesday how difficult it is to win games,” he told a news conference ahead of Saturday’s visit to West Bromwich Albion.

”Just be calm and be focussed. We are in October.

“We have good results, we go game by game. We will analyse at the end of the season. We are okay but it is the same as last season.”

There was short shrift too for a question about the possibility of going the whole season unbeaten, as Arsenal did in the Premier League in 2003-04.

“I answered that in the last press conference. Forget about it,” the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager said.

He was more impressed by the fact that if City do not lose this weekend, forward Gabriel Jesus will have gone a year without losing a game for club or country.

“Wow. What a record. Amazing,” Guardiola said.

He was also pleased to report that Vincent Kompany, who has been to see a specialist in Barcelona, will return to training in the next week or 10 days.

Sergio Aguero needs one more goal on Saturday to break the club’s scoring record of 177 goals in all competitions, a milestone he shares with Eric Brook.

Reporting by Steve Tongue, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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