Man City deserved Carabao Cup loss to Southampton

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola gave a scathing assessment of his side’s performance after they crashed out of the League Cup in a miserable 2-0 defeat to Southampton on Wednesday.

The competition has long been an area dominated by City, who have won the Cup six times since 2014, but for the second time in as many seasons they were knocked out before the semi-finals.

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For just the third time in Pep Guardiola’s season as City boss, and the first time since 2018, his side failed to even manage a shot.

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“That’s why we weren’t good,” he told Sky Sports when asked about that statistic.

Southampton struck twice before the half-hour mark and defended well to limit City’s chances going forward, despite only having 28 per cent of possession.

Guardiola was blunt in his analysis of his team’s performance, telling BBC Radio 5 Live: “The better team won. We didn’t play well, we didn’t play well at the start. There are many games you can start badly and win and we didn’t do that.

“When you’re not ready to play this game, you’re an inch late and you don’t score. When you’re ready, you score.

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“It was a bad night today, the opponent was better so we have to congratulate them. To win games you have to earn it and tonight we didn’t.”

Guardiola had named a strong side of Joao Cancelo, Jack Grealish, Ilkay Gundogan and Kalvin Phillips among the starters, but apart from an early shot that midfielder Gundogan pulled wide, they had little impact on the game.

Guardiola’s sentiments were echoed by Gundogan, who was disappointed with his team’s performance.

“It’s definitely not what we wanted,” the German told Sky Sports.

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“We had hopes of qualifying for the Carabao Cup, but that [performance] there was no chance. It wasn’t enough for us.

– We made a lot of mistakes with the ball, missed a lot of passes, gave them the ball too easily and it resulted in two goals.

“Today we were not good enough to create chances, not good enough to score. The performance of the whole team gives this result.”

City will need to improve for their next game on Saturday, a Premier League derby away to neighbors Manchester United, who have won their last eight competitive games.


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