Pep Guardiola issued a rallying cry for Manchester City to complete a historic treble after his team lifted the Carabao Cup on Sunday.
Aymeric Laporte’s late header was enough for City to win the trophy for the fourth time in a row against Tottenham, winning the first of three possible trophies this season.
City face Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday and need just two more victories in the Premier League to be champions.
Pep Guardiola has called on his Manchester City side to complete the treble this season
City won the Carabao Cup on Sunday – their first trophy of the season – by beating Spurs 1-0
‘We have won the first title and we are close to second – and then we have got Paris to try for the next one,’ said Guardiola.
‘To arrive in the last stages as we have this season and the previous season you have to take every game seriously otherwise it would be impossible to win four League Cups in a row. It’s impossible.
‘So now we just rest and prepare the semi-final against PSG and then after we are just two games away to try to win the most important title of the season – the Premier League. The Premier League is the nicest one, the one I’m the most proud of.’
Guardiola admits he is most proud of nearly sealing the Premier League title this season
On Sunday’s win over Spurs, Guardiola added: ‘We play to score and we played very well. The spirit in lockdown has been great, we played with personality and created chances. In general we played a really good final.
‘We had a lot of corners, we are not a strong team with that but he [Laporte] was there to score the goal.
‘We are happy we won, but football is the only game where we can play like new did and lose. When you play with the stats we had, the way we played – in any other sport you win. But this sport is completely special.
‘We don’t have time to work, we don’t have time to do anything. We just have time to recover and try get the team ready. Players who did not play today deserved to play but that’s the schedule.
City beat Spurs on Sunday afternoon via Aymeric Laporte’s (left) last-gasp header at Wembley
‘You cannot arrive in last stages of all competitions with just 11, 12 or 13 players. It’s impossible. I think of all my players. It’s tough but it is what it is.
‘Everyone is involved here and we are going to try to finish the season.’
On the thrill of winning the game in front of 2,000 City fans, Guardiola added: ‘We missed them – to share it with them is much better. The reason we do it is for them. It is much better, not full but good news and good to celebrate with them.’
Match-winner Laporte believes City’s win over Spurs can inspire the team ahead of Wednesday’s crunch game versus PSG.
Laporte (middle) claims the late victory props them up with to take on PSG on Wednesday
‘We are so happy to win this title again. We lost in the FA Cup, so it is something good for us to get confidence and to keep going like we have done in the last few months,’ he said.
‘We have been so, so good and we have to keep this rhythm, this way to win more titles.
‘It was difficult because they (Tottenham) are a good team. It’s never easy to play against a team like that. Today, we were superb.’
Laporte could have been sent off in the first half for two bookable offences – but interim Spurs boss Ryan Mason refused to blame referee Paul Tierney for his side’s heartbreaking loss.
Laporte may be fortunate not to have seen red in the first-half for two fouls on Lucas Moura
‘I thought the first one was an absolute certain yellow, but it’s not the talking point because maybe he doesn’t make the second foul if he’s on a yellow.
‘Listen, it happened. At that point it was 0-0 and 0-0 for a very long time in the second half as well.
‘That isn’t on our minds at this moment as we’re trying to get over the fact we’ve just lost the cup final.
‘It’s difficult to take, it’s difficult to take for the group of players and for everyone associated with the football club. We have to move on.
‘I think when you lose a cup final, it’s disappointing. We’re all hurting. I am, the players are and I’m sure the fans are and everyone associated with the football club. It’s difficult to take.
Ryan Mason refused to blame refereeing decisions for his side’s loss in the Carabao Cup final
‘Obviously it’s my job, a coach’s job to start giving the players a platform and start preparing, start planning.’
‘It’s painful. I’ve been sitting in there as a player, I’ve played for this football club and lost a final, I know what it’s like.
‘I know that feeling. It’s normal that they’re hurting. It’s normal, because it shows that they care. And this group of players care deeply about this football club.
‘I think we saw that today, they gave absolutely everything, 100 percent commitment. ‘We tried, we tried, it wasn’t enough today, that’s tough to take.’