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Tuesday 17 January 2017

Nolito: City's best yet to come

Manchester City's Nolito
Manchester City's Nolito

Nolito has warned there is much better to come from Manchester City as their development under Pep Guardiola continues.

City's vulnerabilities have been exposed of late with the flying start they made under Guardiola coming undone to some degree.

Criticism of Guardiola's methods grew louder after Saturday's heavy loss at Leicester but forward Nolito believes City's confidence-boosting 2-0 defeat of Watford on Wednesday can point the way forward.

The victory was only City's fifth in 16 games and was their first at home in the Premier League for almost three months. Their clean sheet was also the first they had registered in nine attempts. Nolito, who started up front with Sergio Aguero suspended, said: "Obviously we are all behind him (Guardiola) and follow what he says. The best is yet to come.

"The last few results have also been because we played against other teams who were also very good. It's always tough, and always depends as much on the other team you play."

City took the lead in a drab encounter with Pablo Zabaleta's first goal in two years after 33 minutes.

Raheem Sterling hit the bar early in the second half but City were not convincing and did not wrap up victory until David Silva claimed their second after 86 minutes. Odion Ighalo had spurned a good chance to equalise just moments earlier.

City remain fourth, seven points behind leaders Chelsea, but have at least addressed the issue of their home form ahead of Sunday's crunch visit of Arsenal.

Nolito said: "You always need to win after several games where you didn't get the three points at home. It was difficult, but it was important to get the three points and now we think of Arsenal.

"It will be a hard game but I guess Arsenal will come and try to get the three points, as that is their philosophy of football. It is also ours, so we will have to see who gets the points. It's difficult because they are rivals in the title race."

City are waiting to learn the extent of what seemed a serious knee injury to Ilkay Gundogan.

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