Pep Guardiola hailed his side’s quality after Manchester City moved ahead of Arsenal to the summit of the Premier League with victory at the Emirates, but warned that the league is not over yet.
Erling Haaland wrapped up a 3-1 victory for the reigning champions, as Arsenal slipped out of the top spot they had occupied since the third week of the season.
Bukayo Saka’s penalty spot-kick had levelled after Kevin De Bruyne had struck first for Manchester City, but goals from Jack Grealish and Haaland secured the three points for Guardiola’s side.
The City manager reflected on a difficult game in London and praised Arsenal’s gameplay.
“The game was half-half,” Guardiola said.
“It’s not easy to play against them, the build up they have is really good.
“We were in the game and at the end, the quality of the players made the difference.”
Arsenal have now lost three of their last four matches in all competitions, but remain behind City only on goal difference, and do have a game in hand.
For Guardiola, despite moving to the top of the table, he warned that there was a lot more of the season remaining.
He added: “There are still many games to play, the Champions League is coming, the Europa League is coming, so – but importantly is the fact we could have come here a few weeks ago eight or nine points behind and losing here will be almost over.
“Now for the fact that they dropped points, we came here for the chance to win the game and now we are there (level at the top of the league).
“So far they’ve got better results than us – this is the reality.”
Arsenal had held an eight-point lead but it had been eroded as City found their form and they showed their quality again at the Emirates.
Mikel Arteta admitted all his Arsenal players were feeling downcast after the defeat and urged his side to be more ruthless going forward.
“We are all feeling down, especially because they knew we could do much better today to get a very different result and we just give them the game,” the Arsenal boss said.
“We have to pick the points because the performances are there for sure. What we’ve done today against this team, believe me that wasn’t the game that they wanted to play.
“But we wanted the points and we didn’t get them and at the end the games are decided in the boxes and we have given too much away today. We weren’t ruthless enough to convert our chances.
“That’s what we have to improve on.”