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Published: Tue, October 25, 2016
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Iheanacho makes instant impact as City draw with Saints


That will worry and frustrate Pep Guardiola, a manager committed to free-flowing, attacking football. The last time they won here was in April 2004.

Southampton manager Claude Puel praised his side's mentality in what he described as a "difficult game against a good team", especially as they'd had just two days' break between this fixture and their Europa League tie on Thursday.

City have been hindered greatly by individual errors of late, with Bravo's poor clearance and subsequent red card at Camp Nou making Barcelona's Champions League victory a foregone conclusion.

Stones thought he had made amends five minutes later when he bundled in Kevin De Bruyne's free-kick, but the goal was disallowed after Aguero, who jumped to head the ball but failed to make contact, was flagged offside.

"There is a difference between the first and second half". The difference between the first half and the second half was obvious and that is what we have to realise.

In the second half, City finally started to assert some control. Just two days between the games is very hard and Manchester have had more time to recover.

Guardiola did not emerge from the home dressing-room until 50 minutes after the final whistle, determined to deliver some home truths in his post-match inquest.

He added: "We were together - we speak but nothing special". We spoke about it after the last game to try and avoid it and we'll repeat that again.

"I was a football player, I know this can happen", said Guardiola when he finally emerged from the City dressing room.

"Sometimes you are able to win 10 times in a row and after not to win five times". You have to accept that but I am not a guy who regrets.

Pep Guardiola: "No, no, I'm not going to change".

At halftime, a loss that should have been a draw, but City still needed more quality to come back and win the game. The young Nigerian disappointed against Everton when he was given a starting berth, but this was a reminder of his quality. He scored 10 minutes after coming on and reaffirmed his status as one of the most lethal finishers in the Premier League-he has now netted 11 goals from 17 shots on target in his Premier League career. While on worldwide duty this month the Argentinian superstar said he is getting used to Guardiola's demands, but claimed the City boss is "picky about everything".

The other was a 5-3 defeat at Spurs in January 2015.

Guardiola, however, says his players' reaction to their mistakes is the key issue that must be addressed.

Manchester City: Bravo, Kolarov, Kompany (Navas 78), Stones, Fernandindo, Gundogan, Sterling, Sane (Nolito 90), Silva, de Bruyne (Iheanacho 46), Aguero. Kompany was not in tune with his fellow defender and Redmond pounced, taking the ball wide of goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and scoring.

Stones has been hugely impressive since joining City and looks a fine prospect, but this was a costly mistake.

But on Sunday, Guardiola kept his players in the dressing room for almost an hour after the game.

He is likely to benefit from Vincent Kompany's return.

It would take every ounce of defensive skill, and a yellow-card to Fraser Forster for gamesmanship, but the Saints hung on to extend their Premier League undefeated streak to five. "We're a little bit disappointed..."

Boos rang out at full-time as frustrated City fans cursed their missed opportunity to put daylight between themselves and the chasing pack.

He played a number of penetrating passes between the lines that set City off on moves forward.

"I love players who have the personality to take the penalties".

There's still work for Guardiola to do. All quotes and information were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted.

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