Leroy Sane On Bench - Manchester City Team vs Brighton Confirmed

Manager Pep Guardiola of Manchester City after the Premier League match between Manchester City and Leicester City at Etihad Stadium

Pep Guardiola has taken Manchester City to another level this season Credit Getty Images

Liverpool showed it meant business this season by beating West Ham 4-0 on the opening weekend, then winning its next five games. They had not fallen behind in a top-flight game since January and perhaps that was exactly what they needed here, on a sunny south coast afternoon against carefree opponents, the widespread assumption being that they would cruise home by doing what they usually do. And with the crux of the team remaining more or less the same, the Blues will be well aware of the pressure which will attempt to engulf them once the match begins. "We gave everything. We got 97 points".

The Seagulls confirmed their Premier League status for another term last week, when their rivals Crystal Palace beat Cardiff City, although the Sussex side would have done it themselves the following day with their draw against Arsenal. We couldn't lose one point. "It was, 'Aah, it will be so hard'".

City kept the title race alive by pulling off a 2-1 victory thanks to Leroy Sane's second-half goal and an unbelievable clearance off his own goal-line by City defender John Stones. It was Liverpool's only loss of the league season.

"Liverpool in the last four years didn't win one". Any momentum appeared to have gone. Liverpool helped us to be there all the time, so to win the title you had to win 14 games in a row.

Brighton, safe from relegation as of the previous week but in dismal form, always looked like being compliant opponents for City.

City have racked up 157 goals in all competitions this season, but have had to grind it out in recent weeks, winning three of their last four games 1-0. Before the full implications of that Murray goal had set in for the City faithful, Pep Guardiola's side had levelled.

He added: "When our backs were against the wall, we won at the Etihad and that made the difference and until now, we have been able to stay in front".

The race seemed wide-open early on, with City, Liverpool and Tottenham all in the mix.

Liverpool play Wolves and still have to win if they are to have any hope of winning the league, but they must also hope that Brighton can do the unthinkable and beat a City side who appear to have laser focus. By that stage, Liverpool was leading.

Their taunting was sure to have struck a nerve among Kopites as they watched one of their former stars taste yet more glory at their expense - especially given what Sterling himself had to say about City's triumph.

Liverpool's 2-0 win against Wolverhampton Wanderers was in vain.

"No, the Champions League won't soften the blow if we finish second - I think it will still hurt massively".

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