Vincent Kompany does not believe that Manchester City will be out of the running for a Premier League title no matter what happens in Thursday's clash with Liverpool.
Liverpool enter the game holding a seven-point lead in the standings as City struggled through the month of December, losing three times and allowing Jurgen Klopp’s unbeaten side to open up a gap at the top.
City famously ran down Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United for the league title in 2012, and while a loss would see Guardiola's side fall 10 points back, the Belgian says all hope will not be lost.
“We overcame eight points in six games in the past,” he told reporters. “I don't live with that scenario in my head, of what happens if we lose.
“The moment I have to face the situation, at that moment I'll see what the options are.
“I promise you now - when you are 10 points behind, all of a sudden, if there are not many teams between you and first, it only takes one team to start having a bad month and you will be back in.”
And while the 32-year-old admits that winning against Liverpool will make defending their title much easier, he doesn’t see it as a match that must be won for City to claim another crown.
“It's easy for everybody to assume that everything rests on this game,” he said. “I'm probably one of the only ones that disagrees, for the simple fact that we only had three games that we were below standard. That's how far we are now.
“It only takes the other teams three games below standard and if we play to our ability, we will be back in.
“I want us to win because it gives us a better chance. Any other result, as long as we get back to the team we are, I think we will compete still.”
City ended their poor December with a 3-1 win over Southampton, and Kompany implored his team to “come out fighting” in 2019 as he hopes they will be able to challenge on multiple fronts in the second half of the season.
“From the experience the players have been through before, sometimes you can turn it around, sometimes it doesn't happen.
“Just now, when you are caught in the corner, you come out fighting. If we come out fighting, even if results don't go the way we want, because you can be lucky or unlucky in football sometimes and in life in general... if you come out fighting, eventually with the talent we have, we will get back on top of it.
“Hopefully, with enough time to catch up with Liverpool and to win other trophies as well.”