Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian has been passed fit for Saturday's Premier League clash with Southampton.

The 32-year-old suffered a freak ankle injury as Jurgen Klopp's side celebrated a penalty shoot-out defeat of Chelsea in Wednesday's UEFA Super Cup.

A supporter on the pitch slipped and hurt Adrian, leaving Klopp fuming given first-choice keeper Alisson is sidelined with a calf problem.

Had Adrian not recovered in time for the game at St Mary's Stadium, the experienced Andy Lonergan would likely have been called upon to make a surprise Liverpool debut.

However, Liverpool confirmed on Saturday that Adrian is available, having sufficiently proved his fitness in the past 24 hours.

Trent Alexander-Arnold, Georginio Wijnaldum and Roberto Firmino have all been restored to the starting line-up for the clash with Southampton, having all come on as substitutes against Chelsea in Istanbul. Joe Gomez, Fabinho and Jordan Henderson drop to the bench.

David Luiz will make his Arsenal debut against Burnley on Saturday, but Nicolas Pepe has been kept waiting for a first Premier League start.

A deadline-day signing from Chelsea, the experienced David Luiz joins Dani Ceballos and Alexandre Lacazette in the XI as Unai Emery makes three changes to the team that won 1-0 at Newcastle United.

Lacazette was an unused substitute in that match and Spanish midfielder Ceballos appeared in the second half following his loan move from Real Madrid.

Pepe, a club-record signing from Lille, could feature off the bench for the second week running as Granit Xhaka drops out of the squad due to back and leg bruising.

Mesut Ozil is missing as a result of illness earlier in the week, but Sead Kolasinac is back in the matchday fold.

At his pre-match news conference, head coach Emery stated both players were mentally ready to return to action after being given time off due to concerns over their safety.

Ozil and Kolasinac were victims of an apparent attempted carjacking in July and missed last weekend's season-opening victory.

Calum Chambers and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, starters at St James' Park, are relegated to the bench.

Mauricio Pochettino says winning a trophy this season is a purely personal objective and not a barometer for Tottenham as a club.

On the eve of his sixth campaign in charge, Spurs boss Pochettino admitted the time had come for him to deliver silverware.

The comments contrasted with his previously held view that a trophy was less important than cementing a place in the Premier League's top four.

Tottenham achieved that top-four aim last term while reaching the Champions League final, which they lost 2-0 to Liverpool.

Pochettino claims his goals have not changed since that result and are not necessarily an accurate measure of success.

"Of course it was always my priority [to win trophies], but it was a big priority to help the club," Pochettino told Sky Sports.

"It doesn't change that. Always my priority is to win, to win games and trophies.

"I think a few days ago someone asked me what my aim was for this season.

"My personal objective is to win a trophy, but that doesn't mean that winning a trophy is compulsory, or that it will be an unsuccessful season if we do not win a trophy.

"But personally, if at the end we do not win a trophy, for myself that is going to be an unsuccessful season.

"But that does not mean that it will be unsuccessful for the club. That is for myself, not the collective."

Arsenal have opened contract talks with star forwards Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette, Unai Emery has confirmed.

The Gunners strengthened their attacking options with the signing of Nicolas Pepe from Lille before the end of the transfer window and now want to tie their established front duo to new deals.

The pair have forged a strong partnership in north London, scoring a combined 35 goals in the Premier League last term.

Aubameyang, 30, is contracted until 2021, while 28-year-old Lacazette's deal expires at the end of the following season.

"They are very important players for us and their contracts need to be in the same balance, as players with us and also with the contracts with the club," head coach Emery told reporters.

"It's one circumstance, one issue now, that the club is working on.

"[Technical director] Edu is here for that reason. There's also Raul [Sanllehi, head of football] and Huss [Fahmy, chief contract negotiator] working with the players for that.

"It's important for them, but my focus is on preparing [for] the matches, each training session, and making sure the players are focused and concentrated for us and on the work.

"I want the best for the club, I want the best for the players.

"I think if they and the club are speaking about that, it's perfect."

Arsenal have been prepared to part with big-name forwards in the recent past, losing Robin van Persie and Alexis Sanchez to Manchester United within six years of each other.

Olivier Giroud moved to Chelsea in January 2018, the same window that saw Aubameyang arrive from Borussia Dortmund.

The Premier League window may have already closed, but Manchester United and Manchester City are still in the headlines.

After going head-to-head for Harry Maguire, the two Manchester clubs are reportedly eyeing Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho.

This rumour will not go away anytime soon.

 

TOP STORY – UNITED AND CITY BATTLING FOR SANCHO

According to the Daily Mail, Sancho will leave Dortmund at the end of the season as rivals United and City do battle for the England international.

Sancho was reportedly on United's list of targets during the off-season, but Dortmund were unwilling to sell their 19-year-old star.

The English talent has flourished since joining Dortmund from Premier League champions City in 2017, and the Daily Mail claims the Bundesliga club are already looking for replacements.

 

ROUND-UP 

- Inter are considering a move for Man United's Alexis Sanchez after missing out on Edin Dzeko, reports Gianlucadimarzio.com. Bosnian striker Dzeko signed a new contract with Roma and Inter are now looking for alternatives, including Sanchez, free agent Fernando Llorente, Eintracht Frankfurt star Ante Rebic and Arkadiusz Milik, who could be used in a swap involving Mauro Icardi.

- According to le10sport, Ajax, AC Milan and Lille are among the clubs interested in Barcelona defender Jean-Clair Todibo. The 19-year-old arrived from Toulouse in January.

- Brescia have offered former Juventus and Italy midfielder Claudio Marchisio a two-year deal, reports Sky Sport Italia and other outlets in the country. Marchisio is a free agent after leaving Zenit and the 33-year-old could be joined at Brescia by Mario Balotelli.

- Sport claims Barcelona are prepared to sell midfielder Arturo Vidal for €20million as the Chile international continues to be linked to Inter and a reunion with former Juve boss Antonio Conte.

- According to Corriere dello Sport, Napoli and Juve are the only options for Inter outcast Icardi following Dzeko's Roma renewal.

- James Rodriguez may not leave Real Madrid following an injury to Eden Hazard, according to reports. James had been tipped to join either Napoli or Atletico Madrid, but the Colombia star is in Madrid's squad for their LaLiga opener at Celta Vigo on Saturday.

After his third incredible assist of the night, Kevin De Bruyne's raw emotion spilled out in an outburst part-gladiatorial and part, well… odd.

"This is our house, our house! This is our house!" he exclaimed repeatedly, pointing at the Etihad Stadium turf after Sergio Aguero put Manchester City ahead on aggregate for the first time in a helter-skelter Champions League quarter-final.

Unfortunately for De Bruyne and City, Fernando Llorente snuck in through the back door before Aguero triggered the hyper-sensitive alarm that is VAR, meaning Raheem Sterling's apparent last-gasp winner was ruled out.

The heartache continued in that weekend's Premier League rematch as the Belgium midfielder hobbled out of a knife-edge 1-0 win – a result pivotal in them claiming back-to-back Premier League titles.

While De Bruyne performed "beyond the normal situations", in the words of Pep Guardiola, during City's dominant 2017-18 campaign, last term failed to get off the ground. He seemed to be at full flight during that undulating Tottenham clash, only for a fourth injury of the season to bring him back to earth.

The table beside Messi

Guardiola has never been short of warm words for the player he inherited as a record signing from Manuel Pellegrini in 2016.

His first season in Manchester was one of struggle, in terms of bringing a squad in need of an overhaul in certain positions up to speed with his demands. De Bruyne was never a concern.

"Messi is on a table on his own. No-one else is allowed. But the table beside, Kevin can sit there," he said after watching his star turn open the scoring in a 4-0 win over Bournemouth in September 2016.

De Bruyne's exploits over the next two years lived up to that lofty status until he was halted by medial knee ligament damage in August last year. A further knee setback before the turn of the year gave way to muscular problems during his subsequent returns.

Guardiola seems keen not to apply too much pressure upon what essentially amounts to the third act of his City career.

"I think Kevin has the same motivation as always. What happened last season, it does not mean it will happen this season," he said before Tottenham's latest visit to the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

"Every midfield player has his own qualities. Of course, Kevin has special qualities that [other players] don't have."

Mentally done

De Bruyne has rarely lacked confidence in those qualities, to the extent he was unfairly labelled as a troublemaker during formative years with Gent and Genk.

But the 28-year-old conceded his seemingly unshakable belief was tested by last season's trails.

"After the Tottenham injury, mentally I was done," he told BBC Sport. "Four injuries in a year is a lot."

Those comments came after De Bruyne re-announced himself with a blistering cameo in the 6-0 FA Cup final demolition of Watford in May.

"I feel somewhat blessed to end the season in this way and show everyone that I am still the same and hopefully next season will be better," he added, having scored City's third at Wembley before cutting their beleaguered opponents to pieces.

Boring, boring City

There were complaints over the perceived sterility of City's domination following the cup final, with a similar tone accompanying some reaction to a comparatively emphatic opening Premier League win at West Ham last weekend.

Such an analysis obviously gives little weight to the suffocating pressure of last season's title race, where three clutch 1-0 wins in the final five games helped to get City over the line. It ignores the beguiling brilliance of the Silvas, Bernardo and David, Sterling's blossoming into a world-class talent, Vincent Kompany's piledriver and that Tottenham game.

However, look at the Gabriel Jesus goal disallowed for a marginal offside at London Stadium last time out and you will find the nub of frustration.

It featured slick, quick exchanges of passes, a burst towards the byline, a cutback and a tap-in. One of those City goals. A Guardiola goal. Wonderfully crafted but also somewhat formulaic.

Key creator

Expect to see plenty more of those, potentially this weekend if Mauricio Pochettino elects to expose Tottenham's flanks with a midfield diamond. But De Bruyne is the man who brings something more urgent, more direct and more visceral to the most talent-stacked creative department in world football.

According to Opta numbers, De Bruyne averaged 5.8 long passes per 90 minutes in 2017-18, with the number climbing to 6.1 last season. All the other players frequently selected in Guardiola's playmaking positions attempted fewer than three in each match of the 100-point campaign.

Bernardo Silva hit 3.6 in 2018-19, with Ilkay Gundogan's return of 4.3 owing much to his deployment in the holding role when injuries hindered Fernandinho during the second half of the season.

De Bruyne's successful long passes in each match (3.8 for 2017-18 preceding 4.2) are also the highest figures for every midfielder in the past two seasons.

Since August 2017, he and David Silva are level in creating 2.2 chances from open play per 90 minutes, although the Belgian's 218 minutes per assist leave him out in front. His "big chances" created in each match reads 0.7, with the elder Silva next on 0.5.

Those numbers are illuminated by every scything, rapier throughball and each driving run with bad intentions.

Such special qualities will be Tottenham's concern when De Bruyne returns to his house for the first time this season. It will be reasonable to ask, "are you not entertained?".

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino joked he would like to face Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola in the boxing ring.

Pochettino's Tottenham will travel to Manchester for Saturday's Premier League blockbuster against reigning champions City at the Etihad Stadium.

Spurs boss Pochettino has enjoyed success against Guardiola after dramatically knocking out City in the Champions League quarter-finals last season.

Pochettino said he is ready to go head-to-head with Guardiola, though he insisted football is a collective sport.

"For me, the best thing to see who is the best is to go there, brave managers, put like [heavyweight boxer] Anthony Joshua and create a ring and fight," Pochettino said.

"I don't know [who would win]. He is strong. You don't know. That is a joke. But it is not me with another coach.

"It is not me and Pep. I am so brave on the touchline because I know that is never going to happen, so I shout and everything.

"That is the point – I love to compare my team with another team. Football is a collective sport. It's not a personal competition.

"Maybe another way is to put the ball in the middle with two goals and play one-on-one. Maybe we need a competition between the 20 managers."

 

 

 

Pep Guardiola sees no reason why Raheem Sterling cannot break through the 30-goal barrier for Manchester City this season.

England winger Sterling has started the new campaign in sparkling form, opening the scoring against Liverpool in the Community Shield before netting a hat-trick in last weekend's 5-0 demolition of West Ham.

The 24-year-old hit 17 Premier League goals last season and 25 in all competitions as City won an unprecedented domestic treble.

Sterling's West Ham treble brought up 50 top-flight goals in City colours, 38 of which have come since the start of the 2017-18 campaign.

Guardiola has no desire to set targets for his forward line but has no doubt the ex-Liverpool man's numbers can improve further.

"Yeah, hopefully. It will be good for him and for the team," he said, ahead of Saturday's keenly anticipated home game against Tottenham.

"When he's in front of the goal, he puts it in the net. So, he can do it, yeah. He scored 25 [last season] and 25 to 30 is only five goals. He can do it.

"But I don't know. I never spoke with Sergio [Aguero] or Gabriel [Jesus] or Raz, with any of the people up front, about what are their dreams and targets and these kinds of things. I don't know, honestly. They are happy when they are scoring goals.

"I think goals are a consequence of the way we play - their mood, how the team's playing, no injuries. 

"I wouldn't judge him if he scored 30 goals, or 35 or 20. When he scores goals, I'm happy. But if he does what he has to do for him and the team, it's enough."

 

Guardiola has experienced a number of enjoyable tussles with Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino, dating back to the Argentinian claiming his first senior coaching win at Espanyol with a victory over mighty city rivals Barcelona in 2009.

When that rivalry transferred from Catalonia to the Premier League in 2016, new City boss Guardiola won his first six straight top-flight games before his side were ransacked in a 2-0 defeat to Spurs at White Hart Lane.

City have not lost a league game to Tottenham since, winning the past four, but were dumped out of the Champions League in April when Pochettino's men prevailed in a dramatic quarter-final.

"About Tottenham, I think my colleague can speak better about his team," Guardiola said. "I said from the first day when we played at White Hart Lane and lost 2-0, I never said a wrong word about the capacity, quality and possibilities of this team, the manager and the club.

"I said many times, it is not necessary to repeat again. They are a strong team, a good team."

It was not hard to detect a slightly terse tone to the praise of a man who took umbridge at Guardiola labelling Tottenham as "the Harry Kane" team in 2017.

Asked how good a job Pochettino had done in north London, Guardiola indicated his praise might fall on deaf ears.

"Overwhelming, extraordinary, I said many, many times," he added,

"I don’t know if Pochettino receives many compliments as other managers like me, I don’t think so.

"My opinion about him is high standards, even if he doesn’t believe me. He’s a top, top, top, top manager."

Brendan Rodgers says Frank Lampard is the "perfect" coach to take Chelsea forward.

Lampard has lost his opening two competitive matches in charge of the Blues, going down 4-0 at Manchester United in the Premier League before Tammy Abraham's shoot-out miss saw Liverpool edge the UEFA Super Cup.

Chelsea welcome Rodgers' Leicester City – who drew 0-0 with Wolves in their opening outing – to Stamford Bridge in Lampard's first home match on Sunday.

Despite a difficult start, Rodgers believes former Derby County boss Lampard is an ideal fit for Chelsea, where the former England midfielder spent 13 years as a player and became the club's record goalscorer.

"I think Frank has done very well since he has gone in," Rodgers, a former Chelsea youth coach, told a news conference.

"This is a team that finished third and won the Europa League. I think Frank is perfect for it. He and Jody [Morris], they understand the fabric of Chelsea, what it's about.

"You go with your gut feeling. He's been around a long time. He understands the club, the expectancy.

"He's a hero for the supporters. He'll want to win and succeed as a manager. He's got great staff around him who also understand Chelsea and then he'll have that support."

While first-team regulars Eden Hazard and David Luiz left Chelsea in the close season Lampard has been unable to bring in any new signings due to a transfer ban, though Rodgers has no doubt the 41-year-old will still succeed.

"I don't think it will have a bearing," Rodgers added. "They will have the squad to cope with that, when you're in European competitions you have to have the squad to compete in that. They'll be looking to put on a good performance in their first home game under Frank."

Lampard was equally as complementary about Rodgers, whose side have been tipped to challenge for a top-six finish this season despite selling England defender Harry Maguire to Manchester United for a reported £80million.

"[I've got a] really good relationship with Brendan," Lampard told reporters. "It was obvious when he was here he was going to go on to big things.

"He's forward thinking, very open with his players and he's proved that in his career. I look forward to seeing him."

Roy Hodgson says Wilfried Zaha could still leave Crystal Palace despite the Premier League's transfer window closing.

Before last week's deadline Palace rejected bids from Everton for Zaha, who was also said to be a target for Arsenal, with the winger handing in a transfer request in an attempt to force a move away from Selhurst Park.

Zaha scored 10 league goals for the Eagles last season after he signed a fresh five-year deal in August 2018.

Palace have reportedly set a value of £80million on the 26-year-old, and though a move to an English club failed to materialise in the most recent window, a transfer abroad could still go through.

The transfer window across the continent remains open until September 2 and, with clubs including Borussia Dortmund and Napoli having been previously credited with an interest in Zaha, Hodgson knows there could be another twist in the saga.

"You can never rule out the possibility that it might happen because the transfer window in Europe is still open until the end of the month," the former England manager told reporters ahead of Palace's trip to Sheffield United.

"It's not something I'm going to worry about because it's something that I cannot affect. There's not too much point worrying about it, if you ask me would I welcome it, the answer is no.

"I would rather that he gets his head down and commits himself to the season that we've got in front of us and commits himself to helping me, the coaching staff and the players into having another season that we can regard as a good one. That's what I would like."

Zaha, who returned late to pre-season training following Ivory Coast's Africa Cup of Nations campaign, was not deemed ready to start Palace's opening-day clash with suitors Everton, though he came on as a second-half substitute in the goalless draw.

Liverpool teenager Curtis Jones has set his long-term sights on captaining the Reds after signing a new long-term contract at Anfield.

Jones made his senior debut for the Champions League winners in January's FA Cup third-round tie against Wolves and has also been on the bench on three other occasions.

Versatile Jones is considered one of the brightest prospects in Liverpool's academy and the 18-year-old has lofty ambitions.

"Being a local lad it's a dream just to play for the club. To have been offered another long-term contract, I'm absolutely buzzing and I can't wait to get started," he told the club's official website.

"Hopefully I can get a [Premier League] debut and get a goal and give the fans what they deserve.

"Longer term, my dreams are of being the captain of Liverpool football club, playing every week and winning a trophy is definitely what I'm looking to do.

"But I haven't looked that far yet, I'm taking it step by step. My next step should be a big one and I can't wait to see what it is."

Super Cup winners Liverpool are away to Southampton in the Premier League on Saturday.

Manchester City take on Tottenham in an early-season Premier League blockbuster on Saturday, pitting two of English football's surest things against one another.

Harry Kane typically stepped up when Spurs needed him on the opening weekend, netting a second-half brace to see off freshly promoted Aston Villa.

The fact City's 5-0 rout of West Ham featured a hat-trick from Raheem Sterling also felt somewhat par for the course.

Two leading lights in Gareth Southgate's England team, Kane and Sterling have operated at an increasingly prolific level over recent seasons – something that undoubtedly bodes well for the Three Lions with Euro 2020 on the horizon.

Here we look at the rise and rise of two phenomenal forwards.

 

2014-15

After doing his time in the loan ranks, Kane flourished during Mauricio Pochettino's first season in charge at Spurs. His 21 goals placed him second behind Sergio Aguero in the Golden Boot standings. Add in four assists and Kane averaged a goal involvement every 103 minutes.

The year after Liverpool's close-shave in a title race with City (sound familiar?), Sterling chipped in with seven goals and seven assists – a goal involvement every 218 minutes as Brendan Rodgers' Anfield tenure ran into problems and speculation mounted over the winger's future.

2015-16

Sterling sealed an acrimonious move to City and endured a mixed campaign. Six goals and just two assists meant his goal involvement average dropped to 241 minutes.

Kane, meanwhile, was going from strength to strength as he claimed the first of back-to-back Golden Boots.

He only supplemented his 25 goals with a solitary assist, however, for a goal involvement every 130 minutes. This placed him below Leicester City's title-winning heroes Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez in the overall league standings for goals and assists.

 

2016-17

Kane bolstered his all-round game and hit a sublime level as Spurs spent a large chunk of the campaign as Chelsea's most credible title challengers. He hit 29 goals and seven assists, giving him the most goal involvements in the division – two ahead of Alexis Sanchez – at an astonishing average of one every 70 minutes.

Sterling scored seven and set up six for a goal involvement every 193 minutes. But Pep Guardiola was in town and things were heading in the right direction.

 

2017-18

City stormed to the title with a record-breaking haul of 100 points, made possible by a succession of crucial late strikes by Sterling. He doubled his previous best Premier League campaign to finish with 18 goals, while 11 assists meant he was involved in a goal every 89 minutes.

That edged Kane's average of 96, but 30 goals and two assists meant the Spurs star hit greater numbers overall, before collecting the World Cup Golden Boot playing in an England attack alongside Sterling that reached the semi-finals of Russia 2018.

2018-19

Sterling and City retained their remarkable levels of consistency to go back-to-back, the 24-year-old scoring 17 and laying on a further 10. His 27 goal involvements were the fifth-best in the division.

Despite an injury-interrupted campaign, Kane also scored 17 times and assisted four. His excellent goal involvement average of 116 minutes was shy of Sterling's superb 103.

Leroy Sane is set to undergo surgery on his torn anterior cruciate ligament injury in Austria.

Manchester City winger Sane – strongly linked with a move to Bayern Munich before the Premier League's transfer window closed – sustained the injury during the Community Shield defeat of Liverpool on August 4.

The 23-year-old is expected to be out for up to seven months, leaving City without the Germany international for the majority of the 2019-20 campaign.

Sane was expected to have undergone surgery already, though Pep Guardiola told reporters ahead of City's clash with Tottenham: "I think [the operation] is this weekend."

Omnisport understands Sane's operation will take place in Austria, with Professor Christian Fink performing the surgery.

City often use the services of Barcelona-based specialist Dr Ramon Cugat, who has previously treated John Stones, Kevin de Bruyne, Ilkay Gundogan, Vincent Kompany and Claudio Bravo during Guardiola's tenure, though Sane has instead decided to be treated by Fink.

Benjamin Mendy has been a regular patient of Dr Cugat's since he joined City in 2017 and Guardiola is eager to see the France full-back – currently recovering from a knee injury – maintain his fitness heading into his third season at the club.

"What I want with Benj is to be fit, be ready for training sessions weeks and weeks and the weeks after," Guardiola said.

"That is [the] target. After, for his specific qualities, he is going to help us. When he played, he played good. 

"You know, he needs to play but he's had almost two years out. We need him for our movements, our rhythm – many things we want to do.  

"The first target is not to focus on playing, It is to be fit, for one month, train regularly, be ready and, of course, he has a chance to play."

Criticism of Maurizio Sarri's handling of N'Golo Kante will not stop Frank Lampard from using the Chelsea midfielder in much the same manner.

Former boss Sarri exclusively deployed Kante in a box-to-box role rather than in his more familiar place in front of the defence.

The World Cup winner contributed four goals in the Premier League last season but pundits and fans alike called for him to be restored to the position in which he previously shone for Leicester City and the Blues.

Lampard resisted those pleas when he named Kante in a slightly more advanced area for the UEFA Super Cup loss to Liverpool on Wednesday, believing predecessor Sarri to have the right idea.

"It's been a discussion that has been over-talked at times last year and that was me watching it from the outside," Lampard said.

"The important thing for me with all of our midfield is that we have a flexibility and nobody is pinned down to an absolute structure.

"I think we saw elements of that against Liverpool where the players have a freedom to use their attributes.

"The idea that he wins the ball probably as well as anybody in world football doesn't mean that he has to sit in front of the back four and do that.

"He also has it in his game to drive forward with the ball, to lead midfield areas and win the ball back high up the pitch.

"That's what I want to give him the freedom to do."

Chelsea face Kante's former club Leicester in the Premier League on Sunday, their first match at Stamford Bridge under head coach Lampard.

Pep Guardiola does not believe the Premier League title race will be contested between just Manchester City and Liverpool, adamant Tottenham will be challengers.

Champions City host Mauricio Pochettino's side on Saturday, with both teams having got their respective campaigns off to a winning start on the opening weekend.

Phil Foden's early goal handed City a 1-0 win in their last meeting with Spurs, which came three days after Tottenham – with the help of VAR – had edged their way past Guardiola's side in the Champions League quarter-finals.

City's 5-0 triumph over West Ham last time out has led some critics to suggest the back-to-back champions will dominate once more this season, though Guardiola does not buy into the argument, insisting Spurs are among those capable of mounting a challenge.

When asked at the pre-match news conference if he had learned anything from his recent meetings with Spurs, Guardiola said: "How good they are.

"I have spoken many times about Tottenham, you know my words and my opinion on them. They're the second best team in Europe. For me, that's enough.

"Since I came here to England, every season they were a real contender. First season, finish second. Last two seasons, always they were there. Always they were tough, tough games.

"All of the [big six are title contenders]. I'm impressed with how Chelsea played against tough teams like United and Liverpool.

"They didn't win but I am surprised at how well they played. Frank Lampard's team. We saw United, the quality they have up front with a new mood.

"Arsenal bought good players, with [Nicolas] Pepe, David Luiz and people in front like [Alexandre] Lacazette, [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang. [Dani] Ceballos is incredible. A top player, quality. Tottenham are the same. They are really good contenders."

Raheem Sterling shined in City's demolition of West Ham, scoring a hat-trick while VAR chalked off a Gabriel Jesus goal which the 24-year-old assisted.

Despite Sterling having picked up where he left off last term, though, Guardiola has demanded even more from the England forward.

"There are many [great players], he is one," Guardiola said.

"Look at the top six teams and you will find many, many players. The Premier League has incredible players.

"We have many, but Raheem still. I didn't watch all the other games but he's playing so good from the beginning, being clinical, but we want more, he wants more. It was just the first game of the Premier League season."

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