Man City manager Pep Guardiola highlighted a key element of Leeds’ tactics that caused his side problems, and divulged details of what was said between he and Marcelo Bielsa at the final whistle.
Man City came into the contest already three points behind their expected main title rival Liverpool.
With the pressure already on, anticipation was high to see how they would cope against a tenacious Leeds side that caused frequent problems for The Reds in the season opener.
The contest quickly developed into a pulsating end-to-end affair, with chances at either end seemingly being created at will.
Speaking to Sky Sports following the game, Guardiola said of the breath-taking clash: “That was good, huh? When both teams want to attack, it’s a good game. We made an incredible first 30 minutes when we could have scored the goals we needed.
“The team, for the position we’re in, showed incredible behaviour. Unfortunately they couldn’t win, but we go from here. If we were complaining because of absentees, we couldn’t play the way we played today.
“Leeds put a lot of players behind our midfield line. After that they attacked incredibly quickly with fast players outside. It’s not easy to play against them. They’ve showed how good they are.
“We had the chances to kill the game. In the second half it was more equal, but we were better near the end of the second half.”
Guardiola shared a brief conversation with his counterpart at the final whistle, and explained what was said between the two managers.
“He asked me what I thought about the game,” added Guardiola. “I said I’m not able to analyse the game after one second, I’m not able to process it!”
Sterling relished back-and-forth contest
City goalscorer Raheem Sterling was able to operate freely for much of the match.
The structure of the match was in stark contrast to what Sterling usually faces, with 11 men behind the ball a frequent tactic used against Man City.
Despite only emerging with a point, Sterling admitted that he enjoyed the clash with a worthy opponent.
“It was a difficult game, Sterling told the BBC. “The energy levels start to finish we impressive.
“There were a few setbacks that we’ve had like injuries. I think we’ve done well with a short squad that we’ve had.
“They were right in our faces. I prefer playing against teams like that instead of 11 men behind the ball.
“We’ve done fantastic with short squad that we have had and after the international break, we should have a fit squad and ready to go.”
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