Manchester City defender Ruben Dias maintained that his team is still aiming for every trophy this season despite a convincing victory over Liverpool on Saturday.
Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool the lead in the 17th minute at the Etihad, but Julian Alvarez, who replaced the injured Erling Haaland, tied the score before halfway. Kevin De Bruyne, Ilkay Gundogan, and Jack Grealish all scored in the second half as City dominated, leading 4-1.
City’s victory moved them within five points of Arsenal at the top of the Premier League table, but the Gunners responded with a win over Leeds United later in the day. The reigning champions are still eight points behind the London club, despite having a game in hand.
Guardiola’s team is also vying for the FA Cup and the Champions League this year. The Blues will be hoping to end the season with at least one trophy, ideally two or three, after reaching the semi-finals and quarter-finals.
Every season, we try to achieve everything, said Dias. “We follow procedures, and initially, it was just about remaining in the competitions, no matter what they were; now, it’s about winning things. Even though it will happen quickly now, there is still a long distance to go.
“There’s still a lot of games to play, but we take one at a time, if we think too much ahead, we start to lose the focus. We have to think in the moment. We do our best and nothing else. The only thing we have in mind is the next game. To keep putting on the pressure, to stay on the right path and to stay in every competition – the Champions League and the FA Cup.
“It’s all about winning the next match as it comes. That’s it.”
The Portuguese center-back, who has made 31 appearances this season, was also quick to praise his teammates for their impressive performance against Jurgen Klopp’s side on Saturday.
Despite missing three first-team players in Haaland, Phil Foden, and Bernardo Silva, Dias stated that City “showed what they were about.”
“The team as a whole stood out,” he continued, “and that’s the most important thing in the games we play.” That is the most important thing for us, the feeling that any of us can make a difference, and that is what we accomplished today. Our team consists of more than one member.
“Our team is everyone. Today showed a lot of what our team is made of. We didn’t have Erling [Haaland] or Phil [Foden], Bernardo [Silva] was a bit sick as well but still we have loads of quality, the feeling between us of whoever plays we are going to be there – that’s the main strength we have.
“Obviously, Erling is Erling but Julian [Alvarez] is Julian as well and Jack is Jack as well. When Phil and Erling come back, everyone is fit. We can always do better, but I think today every name stood up and it was a big answer from the team. The team was there, and we performed – that’s what we have to do.”
While Liverpool have endured a difficult campaign so far this term, the Merseyside club have still recorded two victories over the Blues. The away side made a bright start to the clash, but City eventually got control of the game and managed to cruise to a comfortable win.
“There was nothing easy in this game,” Dias continued. “We made it look easy, but it was not easy. Liverpool – as much as they might not be in their best moment – against us will always be there. We know that. It’s been like this for a long time now. Essentially, we were able to break them down.
“They’re a difficult team – very intense. It’s always a frenetic game between these two teams, City and Liverpool. Despite what people say, we know very well what a dangerous team they always are, and especially against us given how they press and go man to man on both sides.
“The team gave their all once more and of course it was important for us to overcome this challenge, but at the end of the day it’s another three points and we keep going.”
Guardiola’s side face relegation-threatened Southampton in their next Premier League fixture next weekend.