Pep Guardiola was pleased with his team’s overall efforts against Liverpool and insists there is still a long way to go before next May.
The Blues lost 1-0 but there was very little to choose between the teams in what turned out to be a close run affair between two of Europe’s most astute tacticians.
“We started well but the first chance that arrived for Liverpool they scored from so it was always difficult after that,” said Guardiola.
“We tried to set the pace and the tone for the game. We controlled their counter-attacks, but didn’t create too much in the first half and in the second half it was a little bit better.
“There weren’t many clear chances for either side and I thought we dealt with the threat Mane, Lallana and Firmino pose quite well.
“We made more opportunities after the break but in games like this it is the little details that make the difference.
“I’m not the type of manager to come in and try and say we lost because of this or that – we reacted well after they scored and I didn’t see any of my players not show their personality, but Liverpool are one of the best teams, we were at Anfield and we knew this would be difficult.
“Things could be better but I like working with these guys because they give me everything when they play and train and so the next game, we’ll try again.”
Despite City falling 10 points adrift of Chelsea, Guardiola says it’s far too early to say his side are now too far behind the leaders.
He said: “We have to focus on ourselves, not what the teams around us are doing or what our targets are.
“We are only entering the second half of the season and there is still more than five months to go so it’s a bit early to be worrying too much. It’s not even January yet so there is a lot of time left.
“All we must do is concentrate on the next game which is Burnley, try to win that and then look to win two or three games in a row and carry on from there.
“We have to show strong personality, keep fighting and do what we have to do to win the games.”