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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Joe Bray

Man City dressing room reaction to Southampton defeat sends Manchester United warning

Manchester City immediately turned their attentions to Saturday's derby at Manchester United after their humbling defeat at Southampton, with captain Ilkay Gundogan suggesting that the 2-0 loss can be a positive turning point in their season.

City were toothless at Southampton, losing 2-0 and failing to register a shot on target in reply. Manager Pep Guardiola said after the game that the Blues have 'no chance' on Saturday at United if they repeat the same performance, and put the off-night down to a collective failure 'to be ready' among the whole squad.

Gundogan echoed his manager's assessment, saying City's attitude and desire wasn't enough to win the game, but insisted that the squad were quickly looking to the United clash to put things right.

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"In the end, we were just not good enough," he said bluntly. "It was a poor performance from us – defensively and offensively. We didn’t deserve to win. At the end of the day, it takes a lot of hard work, dedication, commitment and today wasn’t enough. If you are used to great performances from the side then it’s probably more disappointing [when you do lose].

"Sometimes you probably need games like that – obviously it’s very frustrating and hard to take, but maybe it was a good level for us to get back to efforts that have led us to success in recent years.

"You can imagine he [Guardiola] wasn’t happy in the dressing room as we all weren’t. It was just not enough from every single one of us. We lost a lot of easy balls, missed a lot of easy passes."

Looking ahead to the derby, Gundogan further agreed with his manager, saying that every player's performance must drastically improve, although he did warn the in-form Reds that City are confident of showing a quick response to their Southampton shortcomings.

"It’s completely different [to the 6-3 win in September]. Manchester United are in a very good moment right now, full of confidence, they’re hungry, they want to win," Gundogan explained.

"They recruited some really good players in the summer and sometimes it takes time. It looks like it’s starting to click between them so it’s going to be a very tough game – probably the toughest game in the Manchester derby for us in recent years. Going to Old Trafford is always special, it’s going to be really hard, and we need a much better performance than today.

"We’re quite confident. We have a lot of quality in our squad, today hopefully was an exception. I know what we are able to do on the pitch – we all know. It’s just about having the right attitude, being ready to take on every challenge. Right now, I’m confident, even though I’m still frustrated, sad and disappointed from [Wednesday's] game. I’m confident we are going to show a different phase on Saturday in the derby."


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