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Guardiola suffers worst start to a season as a manager after Man City lose at title rivals Liverpool

22:49 EAT 10/11/2019
Pep Guardiola Manchester City 2019-20
The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss made unwanted history as his side slipped to another defeat at Anfield

Pep Guardiola has now officially made his worst start to a season as a manager after Manchester City lost more ground in the title race with a 3-1 defeat at leaders Liverpool.

Goals from Fabinho, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane put Liverpool in command at Anfield, with Bernardo Silva’s late strike not enough to prevent City from suffering their third league defeat of the season.

It means the champions end the weekend down in fourth place in the Premier League, nine points behind leaders Liverpool, and ensured Guardiola set an unwanted record in the process.

City’s tally of 25 points is the fewest Guardiola has won after 12 matches of a season in his entire managerial career. It is also the first time he has been more than three points behind the top of the table at this stage of the season.

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss cut a frustrated figure on the touchline as he was left to rue some key decisions going against his side, combined with a ruthless attacking display by the Merseysiders.

The visitors thought they should have had a penalty when the ball hit Trent Alexander-Arnold’s hand in the penalty area, with Liverpool immediately going up the other end of the field to open the scoring through Fabinho a mere 22 seconds later.

The decision went to VAR, but it was concluded that the handball was not deliberate as Alexander-Arnold’s arm was not in an unnatural position.

After being handed the initiative, Liverpool refused to loosen their grip on the game, with Salah doubling their advantage inside 13 minutes before Mane made it 3-0 within six minutes of the restart.

Guardiola will have been encouraged by the spirit shown by his side as they continued to create chances and managed to pull a goal back through Silva. But the Spaniard will likely need to deliver a near-perfect run of form from here on in order to catch Jurgen Klopp’s side, who look well on course to end their long wait for a 19th league title and deny Man City a third successive Premier League title.