Man City quiet over Premier League fixture schedule that could give Liverpool FC title lead
Liverpool’s win over Manchester United this week had no impact on Manchester City’s preparations against Brighton, insists Riyad Mahrez.
With a point separating the two teams at the top of the table, either team can pressure the other if they go first in a Premier League matchweek. For Liverpool, playing before City sends them to the top of the table as it did after their win over United. For City, like this weekend, they can create a four-point gap ahead of the Liverpool derby with Everton.
After that, however, Liverpool will play ahead of City for two of the other three scheduled fixtures, with both sides having one outstanding game to rearrange and the final day fixtures all played simultaneously. Even though Liverpool could claim an advantage with the schedule, Mahrez says City simply aren’t focusing on anyone but themselves.
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He said no [it doesn’t change anything]. We have to go game by game. If we have to play before or if [Liverpool] play before, whatever. In the end, you have to win.
“We didn’t think about it and we were really focused on our game. It made the difference. To be honest, we didn’t even think about it. [Liverpool’s result vs United] last night. They won and we know we have to win. We have to focus on our game.
“Sometimes we play before and sometimes we play after. It doesn’t really matter to us because we have to play game by game, try to win and play like we did today.”
Mahrez also sent a message to fans who may have felt tense in the stands as City worked hard to break Brighton’s firm resolve on Wednesday.
“We can’t always win two or three zeros at half time,” he said.
“Sometimes you have to go through it, it’s not easy against a very good team and that’s how it is. We were very good, we controlled the game and we kept the intensity from the start and that made the difference.”
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