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Pep Guardiola: Manchester City can still get 'much, much better'





While Ian Darke believes Man City are in a league of their own this season, he also points out that they have a ways to go before they're considered the best ever.

MANCHESTER -- Pep Guardiola says Manchester City can play "much, much better" despite setting an English league record of 15 successive victories.

Guardiola can equal his 16-game winning streak set with Barcelona in La Liga with a victory on Saturday against Tottenham, although he will still be three behind the 19 successive Bundesliga games he won at Bayern Munich.

City remain unbeaten this season with an 11-point lead at the top of the Premier League and Guardiola says he is happy with his side but claims there is still room for improvement.

Asked about records, Guardiola told a news conference: "It's important to play better. Records are OK to break, one day it will be broken, but it's important to focus on the pitch and try to play better -- increase our [number of] chances, concede few and that is what we have to do.

"I'm happy because of the results but the way we play is why I am most satisfied. Of course statistics are statistics and that is good to write about but I'm happy with the way we play. But I have the feeling we can do better -- much, much better -- and we have to try to insist on that."

City will face Tottenham without defender John Stones, who Guardiola says is recovering well from a hamstring injury but is still "one or two weeks" away from coming back into contention.

Captain Vincent Kompany is also a doubt with a "small problem," although the City boss says he should be back fit soon.

Pep Guardiola's Manchester City side face Tottenham on Saturday.

Guardiola says his squad is feeling the strain of a busy schedule and has urged City fans to help them to victory against a team they failed to beat last season.

"Tomorow, with a full stadium, I want our supporters to help us because we are tired in many aspects," he added. "We need our supporters tomorrow against Tottenham -- in the bad moments we need their support please because it will be a tough game. We want to continue with the three points to keep going and try to be there as much as possible."

A win would see City move 21 points clear of Spurs, who finished second in the Premier League last season, but Guardiola has no doubts about their quality.

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino accused Guardiola of being disrespectful earlier in the season when he referred to Spurs as "the Harry Kane team."

But Guardiola was full of praise for Tottenham ahead of their visit to the Etihad Stadium.

"They attack really good in the channels and they have really good young players who are the base of the national team," Guardiola said. "English football can be pleased with what the manager has done.

"When you let them play they have quality to play between the lines -- [Mousa] Dembele, [Christian] Eriksen, [Dele] Alli. They arrive with two or three guys to the crosses perfectly with Kane, Alli and Son [Heung-Min].

"They are strong at the back, of course [Toby] Alderweireld and [Davinson] Sanchez are not available, but they are physically strong. A goalkeeper with experience, really good full-backs -- I think it is a really a good team. I like to watch them play and I think it will be a good game tomorrow."

Jonathan is ESPN FC's Manchester City correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @jonnysmiffy.


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