Manchester City last night recorded their biggest-ever Champions League win, scoring six goals for the second time in four days menaing they’ve now won 15 out of 18 games in all competitions this season.
But Pep Guardiola wanted to talk about something else.
The main talking point from another City stroll was the ridiculous decision to award Raheem Sterling a penalty for falling over his own feet, allowing Gabriel Jesus put the home side two up in a 6-0 group stage win over Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday night.
The wrong decision, Guardiola admitted. But that wasn’t the end of it.
“We realised immediately it wasn’t a penalty,” he commented. “Should he (Sterling) tell the referee? He could do that, yes.
“That was a legal goal. (Sterling) could do that but the referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz didn’t want to concede that goal (against Liverpool) so that’s why it happened.”
Once again, it was Liverpool at the forefront of Guardiola’s thoughts, Liverpool his point of reference, on this occasion pointing to the disallowed goal for Leroy Sane in the Champions League quarter-final at the Etihad in April report the Liverpool Echo.
And there’s been plenty of evidence this year the Reds have got under the skin of the Catalan, not least those three defeats in the last four meetings with Jurgen Klopp’s side.
However, as revealed by the All or Nothing documentary chronicling City’s last campaign, Guardiola had other concerns while talking to assistants Domenec Torrent and Carles Planchart in the Goodison dressing room.
“The forwards of Liverpool are good,” said Guardiola. “They scare me. They’re dangerous, I mean it… Our wing-backs can’t cover their wing-backs.”
He wasn’t wrong.
Then there was the summer meeting in New York where Liverpool won their International Champions Cup clash 2-1.
Afterwards, Guardiola’s press conference at the MetLife Stadium in July was interrupted by the cheers from supporters which greeted Klopp’s arrival at the side of the glass panelled auditorium.
Guardiola stopped mid-answer, called over an apologetic Klopp and then, after a quick handshake, curtailed his conference and made a hasty exit.
“Oh, bye,” said a perplexed Liverpool boss as his rival departed the scene in something of a huff.
Finally, there was a throwaway comment right at the end of the press conference after City’s turgid goalless draw at Anfield in October.
A comment that underlined just how keen Guardiola is to lock horns again with his Red nemesis.
“And on January 1 you will see us at the Etihad Stadium,” said the City boss, having made a mental note of when the rematch was taking place.
It’s since been moved to January 3, but the message remains clear. If there’s one team that has rattled Guardiola, it’s Liverpool.