Pep Guardiola says Mikel Arteta will find the pressure loading on his shoulders now they have established a title lead. The Man City boss maintained a lack of expectation surrounding Arsenal has enabled them to play with freedom in establishing an eight-point lead.
But he insisted now the Gunners are in the clear they will feel the sort of pressure that he and City take for granted every campaign.
“Maybe it’s an advantage for the fact that it is I don’t know how many years that they haven’t won the Premier League,” he said.
“But right now, the advantage of Arsenal, and Manchester United, is nobody has to win the Premier League for 20 points ahead in November like Man City has to – and this is sometimes a big problem.”
City travel to west London for tonight’s clash with struggling Chelsea, trailing the Gunners, whose last title came in 2004, by eight points with a game in hand.
And while Guardiola insisted he has been hugely impressed with Arteta’s side, including when held to a goalless draw by another title rival Newcastle on Tuesday, he believes his side are coming to the boil.
“The way Arsenal played against Newcastle impressed me a lot – they dropped two points but they didn’t drop their quality,” he said.
“But at the same time, I see the way we played the last games, and the feeling is good. Maybe we play badly tomorrow but the feeling is good. The games we play we are better.
“What I want to see still is fight, don’t give up, not now, until the last chance, until the last drop of water we can fight to win the Premier League.”