Freddie Ljungberg's first game in temporary charge of Arsenal ended in a 2-2 draw against Norwich City at Carrow Road on Sunday thanks to a brace from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Teemu Pukki put Norwich ahead via a deflected effort before Aubameyang equalised with a retaken penalty kick, having seen his initial effort from the spot saved.

Todd Cantwell restored Norwich's advantage with a smart finish before Aubameyang levelled for a second time from a corner.

Ljungberg, who played for Arsenal between 1998 and 2007, was promoted from a coaching role to interim boss after Unai Emery was sacked on Friday.

Watford have sacked Quique Sanchez Flores less than three months after bringing him back for a second spell as head coach.

The Premier League club announced the decision on Sunday, the day after a 2-1 loss to fellow strugglers Southampton.

Watford surrendered a first-half lead at St Mary's and remain rooted to the bottom of the table with eight points from 14 games.

In a statement issued on their official website, Watford pledged to move swiftly to install Flores' successor.

"Quique is a man of great integrity and it was clear how much he wanted to have a positive impact, but ultimately results have dictated our decision," said chairman and chief executive Scott Duxbury. 

"The appointment of a new head coach is imminent, and with nearly two-thirds of the season remaining, we will provide all the support necessary to make the coming months successful."

Flores, who presided over a creditable 2015-16 campaign, only returned to Vicarage Road in September after more than three years away.

He replaced Javi Gracia after a slow start to the season but was unable to rectify poor results.

The former Valencia and Atletico Madrid boss took charge of 12 games in all competitions for two wins, four draws and six defeats, including the humiliating 8-0 loss to Manchester City.

Former Newcastle United and Brighton and Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton is rumoured to be one of the frontrunners for the Watford post.

Watford have sacked Quique Sanchez Flores less than three months after bringing him back for a second spell as head coach.

The Premier League club announced the decision on Sunday, the day after a 2-1 loss to fellow strugglers Southampton.

Watford surrendered a first-half lead at St Mary's and remain rooted to the bottom of the table with eight points from 14 games.

In a statement issued on their official website, Watford pledged to move swiftly to install Flores' successor.

"Quique is a man of great integrity and it was clear how much he wanted to have a positive impact, but ultimately results have dictated our decision," said chairman and chief executive Scott Duxbury. 

"The appointment of a new head coach is imminent, and with nearly two-thirds of the season remaining, we will provide all the support necessary to make the coming months successful."

Flores, who presided over a creditable 2015-16 campaign, only returned to Vicarage Road in September after more than three years away.

He replaced Javi Gracia after a slow start to the season but was unable to rectify poor results.

The former Valencia and Atletico Madrid boss took charge of 12 games in all competitions for two wins, four draws and six defeats, including the humiliating 8-0 loss to Manchester City.

Former Newcastle United and Brighton and Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton is rumoured to be one of the frontrunners for the Watford post.

Phil Foden says Manchester City must set their sights on the daunting task of winning every remaining Premier League game this season after they slipped 11 points behind leaders Liverpool.

A 2-2 draw at Newcastle United, who twice came from behind on Saturday, saw Pep Guardiola's champions fail to win for the fifth time in 14 league fixtures.

Liverpool, by contrast, have dropped only two points and a subsequent 2-1 home win for the Reds over Brighton and Hove Albion boosted their already considerable advantage over City.

Guardiola has urged his side to stop thinking about the title race and instead divert all their energy into claiming victories in each individual game.

City won their final 14 league games last term to pip Liverpool to top spot and Foden knows a similar streak is now required as they approach a hectic period in the domestic calendar.

"It's not in our hands now. All we can do is win every game. It's going to be a big challenge for us," said the 19-year-old, who came off the bench as a second-half replacement for David Silva at St James' Park.

"I think [December] is the most important time of the season. Teams usually drop points.

"It's going to be interesting. All we can do now is to try to win all our games and see where it takes us."

Foden acknowledged Jonjo Shelvey's superb 88th-minute equaliser represented a painful blow for a City side who had not long retaken the lead through a magnificent Kevin De Bruyne half-volley.

"We thought that [De Bruyne's goal] was going to be the winner," he added.

"But they kept going and they managed to score a great strike in the end, unfortunately for us. We were all gutted in the changing room. We need to move forward and focus on our next games."

Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold emphasised the value of results over performances following another narrow Premier League victory.

Virgil van Dijk scored two first-half goals, but the title favourites were made to work for Saturday's 2-1 triumph over Brighton and Hove Albion.

Alisson's dismissal for handling the ball outside his box led to a nervy final 15 minutes for substitute goalkeeper Adrian, who saved at full stretch from Aaron Mooy and almost spilled a tame Pascal Gross header into his own net.

Seven of Liverpool's past nine top-flight fixtures have been won by the Reds by a single-goal margin, the exceptions being a 1-1 draw with Manchester United and the 3-1 victory against Manchester City.

But having surged 11 points clear of Pep Guardiola's City side, Alexander-Arnold was paying little thought to the manner of the victory.

"We haven't performed the way we wanted to, but the run we're on is really good," Alexander-Arnold told Liverpool's website.

"We've managed to get another three points, which is important. For us, it's about keeping the momentum up and trying to stretch that run on.

"[It was] a difficult day for us, probably one of the most difficult games we've had at Anfield so far this season. They played really well and executed their game plan.

"But we managed to score two set-pieces and that was massive for us. We know how big a three points that was today."

Alisson's red card means 32-year-old Adrian will have to deputise in Wednesday's Merseyside derby.

Alexander-Arnold insisted he and his team-mates have full faith in the experienced Spaniard.

"We have had setbacks throughout the course of the season, we have had injuries and suspensions," the right-back said.

"We'll be looking to Adrian to come in and do a shift for us like he did at the start of the season.

"We've all got the trust in him and he knows how good he is as a 'keeper and how much we need him. So he'll be raring to go. It's not too much of a blow when you know you've got such a quality 'keeper waiting in the ranks."

Patrick Vieira played down talk he could take over at Arsenal as the Nice coach labelled it a "very complicated job".

Unai Emery was sacked as Arsenal head coach on Friday amid a seven-match winless run for the Premier League club.

Vieira – an Arsenal great – has been one of the names mentioned to potentially take charge at the Emirates Stadium, but the Nice coach played down the reports.

"There are things I don't control, people who say a lot of stuff, which is true or not true," he told a news conference after Nice's 3-1 Ligue 1 win over Angers on Saturday.

"I didn't say anything, I didn't say anything about that. I'm like you, I read, I look, I hear things, and that's it."

Vieira, whose Nice side are 11th in Ligue 1, said the position at Arsenal shaped as a tough one for Emery's successor.

"It's a very complicated job, I realise that," he said. "I support Emery, it's always sad to see a coach losing his job.

"Today it's him, tomorrow it might be me, but as soon as you decide to start in this job, you have to expect to be fired at some point."

Vieira spent nine seasons at Arsenal as a player, winning three Premier League titles and three FA Cups.

His former team-mate, Freddie Ljungberg, is the interim coach of Arsenal, who visit Norwich City on Sunday.

Arsenal made the decision to sack Unai Emery over the past "several weeks" because they felt it was necessary if they wanted to salvage their season, according to director Josh Kroenke.

Following weeks of speculation, Arsenal finally relieved Emery of his duties on Friday in the wake of a 2-1 home defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League.

That was a seventh successive match across all competitions that the Gunners failed to win, a run that has seen them slip to ninth in the Premier League following Saturday's matches.

Freddie Ljungberg was installed as interim head coach until Arsenal make a full-time appointment.

Whoever takes up the vacancy should not expect the club's ambitions for the season to be more grounded because of their difficult start, as Kroenke – son of club owner Stan – still feels they can achieve their goals.

Speaking to Arsenal's website after addressing the team during training, Kroenke said: "Like all of our fans and supporters around the globe, we've been concerned about our recent string of performances.

"We wanted to support Unai and his staff until we decided it was time to make a change and, ultimately, we came to that decision over the last several weeks as a group between myself, Raul [Sanllehi, head of football], Vinai [Venkatesham, chief commercial officer] and Edu [technical director].

"First and foremost, Unai is a good man, someone that we all respect very much. His work ethic on a daily basis between him and his staff was fantastic.

"Ultimately, we started to fall short of several goals that we set. We still feel that we can achieve those goals this season, which is why we decided to make the change now."

Arsenal have already started to evaluate candidates for the position, but Kroenke insists they will not rush any decisions, confident Ljungberg will prove an effective steward in the meantime.

"First and foremost, Freddie has Arsenal DNA," Kroenke continued. "Obviously, he was a player here for a number of years, the supporters know him very well and he's worked diligently behind the scenes for the past several years, including the last year and a half or so with Arsenal again.

"So it's been great to have him around, he knows the club's DNA, and we feel he is the right person in the moment to take the club forward.

"Because of our confidence in Freddie, we're very fortunate that we're going to be entering into our process and doing a thorough search, and it's about finding the right candidate, it's not about finding the first candidate."

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has told his players to forget about their 11-point lead at the top of the Premier League and focus on the visit of Everton.

The Reds capitalised on Manchester City's 2-2 draw at Newcastle with a 2-1 win over Brighton and Hove Albion at Anfield on Saturday.

It was Liverpool's 13th win from 14 league games this season and gives them an even bigger cushion over defending champions City, although Leicester can cut the gap to eight points on Sunday.

With just over a third of the season gone, Liverpool fans are already dreaming of ending their 30-year wait for the league title.

However, Klopp only has eyes for Wednesday's Merseyside derby with Everton.

"We don't think about the points gap or whatever," Klopp said in his post-match press conference.

"People told me tonight already that we are 11 points ahead but Leicester play on Sunday, so it still could be eight. That's how I see it.

"None of these 13 games we won were easy, we didn't feel that for a second. We only have to make sure we are ready always – and always for the next game.

"Result-wise, it is an incredible period for sure, but we don't want to think about the last 14 games – we actually are concerned about the next one, which is on Wednesday against Everton and is a big one."

Liverpool secured victory thanks to a brace of first-half headers from defender Virgil van Dijk. 

However, a red card for goalkeeper Alisson – who will miss the clash with Everton – and a goal from Lewis Dunk set up a tense finale.

Klopp hailed the contribution of second-choice keeper Adrian after he came off the bench at a chilly Anfield and made an important late save from Aaron Mooy.

"We had to bring on a frozen goalkeeper pretty much!" added the German.

"Everybody sitting here is probably not really warm yet, but imagine you go there in shorts, a really thin shirt and some gloves which are not made for keeping you warm.

"We kept on fighting and Adrian especially helped us a lot.

"With his cold feet, he couldn't shoot the ball as far as he wanted. In the end, it kept it a bit interesting but it's only important that we won the game and that's what we did."

Brighton head coach Graham Potter praised the positive endeavour shown by his side, who made life difficult for Liverpool in the closing stages.

"I thought it was a performance of great heart, courage and quality against a fantastic team, and at times the Anfield crowd had to get behind their side because we were really in the game, especially after the sending-off," Potter said.

"It's never easy when you are playing against the European champions and the top team in the Premier League but, at the end, we were pushing strong."

Frank Lampard wants to see "a bit of character" as his side aim to bounce back from a 1-0 home defeat to West Ham, while he refused to blame Tammy Abraham's injury for the result.

Abraham missed the game after suffering a hip injury in Chelsea's 2-2 draw with Valencia on Wednesday, and Olivier Giroud took his place in the starting line-up against West Ham.

Lampard also dropped N'Golo Kante to the bench and watched as West Ham exploited large gaps in the midfield to pick up their first win in eight Premier League matches.

Chelsea will face Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge in midweek before travelling to Goodison Park to play Everton on Saturday, and Lampard indicated he would not make knee-jerk reactions to his side's second home defeat of the league season.

"It can't be one player," Lampard told reporters when asked about the importance of Abraham's injury.

"We arrived back late [from Valencia] and I had to think about how we think about it going forward. We aren't going to get through the season with just 10 or 11 players.

"I think the team out there had enough quality to win this game. There haven't been many times I have said we were below par, hardly at all. Today was one of those days.

"But I don’t think it is time for harsh reactions and judgements across individuals or the team as I see it. It is time for a look at a bit of character to see our reaction against Aston Villa."

Manuel Pellegrini said the result vindicated his decision not to change West Ham's style of play despite their dreadful run of form in the lead up to the game.

The Hammers arrived at Stamford Bridge without a win since September 22, and Pellegrini's future at the club had been the subject of media speculation.

He reflected on a difficult two months, saying: "When you don't win, you are a beast, and when you do, you are a genius.

"I was more worried to convince the players. We know we are not getting the results, but we cannot change the style and must not believe everything we are doing is wrong.

"We were consistent and solid throughout the whole game. But we didn't come here to try to draw. That's the way that this team must play."

Tottenham star Dele Alli has started the Jose Mourinho era particularly well, and the Portuguese coach does not think he could ask any more of the 23-year-old.

After impressing consistently in his first three years at Spurs, Alli appeared to stagnate last season and began the 2019-20 campaign disappointingly.

It was suggested Mauricio Pochettino's exit and fresh impetus from a new coach could be a good thing for Alli, and Mourinho certainly seems to be getting a reaction from the attacking midfielder.

Alli scored twice in Saturday's 3-2 Premier League win over Bournemouth, while he also netted in the Champions League on Wednesday, beginning the comeback in the 4-2 defeat of Olympiacos.

It is the first time since December last year that he has scored in consecutive appearances, while his overall performances have been encouraging.

For Mourinho, playing Alli further forward with Harry Kane has been crucial in beginning the former MK Dons talent's resurgence.

"It's not [about] a simple style, it's just the position and the principles of play," Mourinho told reporters when asked if playing a simpler, direct style of play gets the best out of Alli.

"Every manager has his own ideas and we're all different. Nobody is right and nobody is wrong but, for me, Dele is not a midfield player.

"For me, Dele is not a player to play positionally in midfield, he is a player to be like he is playing, close to Harry [Kane], following some dynamics that we train, but a little bit of freedom to associate with attacking players. This I think is the best position for him.

"Dele, I don't need to speak about. The best thing that can happen to a coach is when you don't need to speak about a player because everybody speaks, all of you [the media], fans, everybody speaks about him and speaks about him for the right reasons.

"He's playing really, really, really well. I couldn't ask for any more from him. He's playing amazing, scoring goals, assisting, working – fantastic."

Alli's attitude had been called into question under Pochettino, but Mourinho defended his character.

"I didn't know him [before being appointed], I only played against him a few times. [I had] no contact with him," Mourinho added. "I don't know the boy, I don't know much.

"I just know the qualities of the players and that was the direction where I went. A player of such quality, it's not possible that he's not performing at a high level.

"Okay, sometimes players are not in the best performance level, but normally, with a little bit of up and down, you need to perform according to your potential.

"I find him a good guy in the group. He's a group guy, not really this kind of selfish person who thinks and speaks only about himself. Not at all.

"He's a Spurs boy, a group boy. The group is a good family. They have very good empathy between them. I just feel that now it's self-esteem coming up and lots of confidence to play."

David Martin said his father Alvin was in tears as the West Ham legend celebrated his son's Premier League debut in a 1-0 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

The 33-year-old goalkeeper made a string of crucial saves to help the Hammers end a seven-game winless streak and he admitted the experience of keeping a clean sheet in the top flight of English football was a surreal experience.

Martin, who previously represented teams such as Leicester City, Milton Keynes Dons and Millwall, joined the Hammers in June as cover for Lukasz Fabianski and Roberto.

His father Alvin, who captained West Ham to their highest-ever league finish in 1986, was in the stands at Stamford Bridge and David Martin revealed emotions were running high at the final whistle.

"We were both in tears and didn't actually say a lot," David Martin told reporters.

"But for my dad to see that here, for a club where he played for 21 years, on my debut and I kept a clean sheet and to get the win for the boys, it's just a fantastic feeling.

"I'm 33 now, I've had a decent career, played quite a few games, but it still can't prepare you coming into this game. I've been struggling to eat for two days! 

"It still doesn't feel real. I'm pleased I got through it and didn't let anyone down. I did actually enjoy it in the end which I didn't think I would do."

West Ham goalscorer Aaron Cresswell heaped praise on his team-mate for helping the club pick up their first away win since August.

"I'm delighted for Dave," said Cresswell. "He's gotten his chance and taken it and I couldn't be more proud of him.

"When he joined the club, Dave will tell you he wasn't expected to play but he's come in every day and he's the hardest worker we've got.

"We haven't had a good run in seven or eight games but that's West Ham - we find it the hard way. We came to Stamford Bridge as underdogs and we couldn't be more delighted."

Jurgen Klopp hailed the contribution of substitute goalkeeper Adrian to a "special win" after Liverpool beat Brighton and Hove Albion 2-1 despite the late dismissal of Alisson.

Two first-half headers from Virgil van Dijk put the Premier League's runaway leaders on course for a routine success on Saturday, but Liverpool ended up hanging on at Anfield after Alisson was sent off in the 76th minute for handling outside his penalty area.

Adrian was caught out from the resulting free-kick as Lewis Dunk drilled the ball home with the keeper out of position and still setting up his wall.

However, the hosts still claimed three points - equalling their record unbeaten top-flight run in the process - as Adrian denied Aaron Mooy and then avoided embarrassment by regathering the ball after a weak Pascal Gross header had squirmed out of his grasp.

"I'm pretty sure Virgil, of course, with the two goals is probably man of the match, but Adrian is for me man of the match," said Reds manager Klopp.

"Because coming in, in a game like this, and making two saves. One was tricky. And even the goalie kicks, of course, are difficult and anybody who ever did that with completely cold feet, it's just not possible.

"We should have probably done that differently but we were not prepared for that situation, so I am completely happy."

Klopp was seemingly less enamoured that Dunk's goal stood, adding: "I think when you have a little bit of sense for human beings, you don't do it like this.

"It was very clever, of course, of Brighton, but a goalie is coming in, setting the wall, trying to get in contact with the players, and they are all trying to settle a little bit and get used, in a second, to each other.

"He [the referee] let it go like this. He's happy with that and I cannot change it but for me it's not 100 per cent right."

Liverpool's determination not to drop points did delight Klopp, who said: "The boys threw everything on the pitch. I love that. It's unbelievable how much the boys want to win and so it made it a really special win.

"Brighton are a really good football-playing side. They had a lot of possession. We had to work really hard against that and I love that the boys were ready to do that in such an intense week." 

The result means Liverpool are 11 points clear at the top of the table, albeit Leicester City can cut that lead when they face Everton on Sunday.

There was a time when Dele Alli appeared destined for greatness.

Jumping up from League One to the Premier League shouldn't be easy for any player, let alone a teenager, but 19-year-old Alli played with an effectiveness and confidence of someone far more experienced than he in 2015-16.

In his first top-flight season, Alli was a massive part of why Spurs were able to mount a title challenge, even if they fell short in the end, as Leicester City did the unthinkable.

But if there was an overriding sense of disappointment around Spurs for failing to capitalise on their greatest opportunity to win a first Premier League title, fans were also witnessing the early establishment of what looked to be a potential great in Alli, whose adaptation was seamless and, quite frankly, remarkable.

With 10 goals and nine assists, Alli's goal involvements haul was up there with the best of them and he would only become even deadlier.

Alli went on to score another 27 and assist 17 over the course of the following two seasons, making rumoured interest from Real Madrid, Barcelona and Manchester City predictable, but understandable.

The speculation became strong enough for Daniel Levy to reportedly put a pricetag of £150million on him, a figure that would've been a world record at the time.

He went into the World Cup an indisputable star, but since Russia, Alli has often appeared a shadow of his former self. Fast forward 17 months and he's missed out on successive England squads, an outcome that would've been inconceivable not so long ago.

Such was his stagnation that some even suggested Spurs' recent change at the helm represented a vital crossroads for Alli – that he'd been allowed to coast under Mauricio Pochettino, something Jose Mourinho simply wouldn't tolerate.

"I asked him if he was Dele or Dele's brother? He told me he was Dele. I said, 'okay, play like Dele'," is how an early conversation with Alli went, according to Mourinho. The fresh impetus and influence of the new boss seems to have done the trick.

For all the criticism of Mourinho in recent times, let's not forget that, whatever his drawbacks, getting the best out of attacking midfielders is something he has a track record of. Deco, Frank Lampard and Mesut Ozil all thrived under the "Special One".

By Alli's own admission, he was "awful" early on against Olympiacos in Wednesday's 4-2 win, but he improved immeasurably as the game progressed and scored the goal that got Spurs back into the contest having gone 2-0 down.

He took an even greater step on Saturday, scoring in successive matches for the first time since last December. But more than that, he looked like the Alli we became so accustomed to seeing punishing opponents at will.

Opening the scoring, Son Heung-min latched on to a direct pass from the back and laid the ball off – purposely or by accident, you decide – and Alli turned in having matched the South Korean stride for stride.

His influence in the first half was undeniable, with only Davinson Sanchez (50) having more touches of the ball than Alli (42), who was proving effective as a link-up player – his delightful flick to Son opening Bournemouth up during a 45th-minute counter.

There was rather more of an individual element to Alli's fine second, controlling another lofted pass on his chest while on the run, holding off his marker and delicately chipping the approaching goalkeeper. It was the kind of effort one would expect of Harry Kane.

Spurs were cruising and Alli was unlucky not to claim a deserved first hat-trick for the club, but while Mourinho's impact with him is plain to see already, there's no doubt where his work is still cut out.

Defensively they capitulated and almost threw three points away again, conceding two for the third successive match and they almost allowed Bournemouth to steal a late equaliser.

While Alli appears to have taken the right route at his apparent career crossroads, Spurs' defensive vehicle is in chaos akin to driving the wrong direction down a one-way street.

The Liverpool juggernaut now looks unstoppable. And worryingly for their title rivals, the majority of Saturday's victory over Brighton and Hove Albion was largely completed while in cruise control.

Jurgen Klopp's side only got out of third gear in the final quarter-of-an hour as three points were safely banked, despite a few late jitters, thanks to two soaring headers from centre-back Virgil van Dijk.

It had all the hallmarks of the kind of win etched out by the great Anfield sides of yesteryear.

Liverpool were dubbed the 'Red Machine' during the heyday of their 1980s dominance when they swept all before them and required an annual tab with Brasso to polish the silverware in the bulging trophy cabinet.

It might only be the end of November, with just over a third of the Premier League season gone, but the engine on the current version is, for the most part, purring along nicely.

A slight tweak here, a little fix there is all that is required between now and the end of the season for Liverpool to end that agonising 30-year wait for their 19th league title. 

Only something spectacular will see this championship charge splutter and grind to halt.

The Reds are now unbeaten in 31 league games home and away, and equalled a club record set under Kenny Dalglish between May 1987 and March 1988.

This was Liverpool's 14th successive league victory at Anfield, their second-best winning sequence on home turf.

Klopp's pre-match team-talk would have required little extra spice as the news filtered through to the dressing room of Jonjo Shelvey's late equaliser as Manchester City were held to a 2-2 draw by Newcastle United.

The Kop were in full voice but the mood was underpinned by two things. Expectancy plus a demand for victory and nothing less. Liverpool's response to that request was clinical in its efficiency.

First, Van Dijk climbed to meet Trent Alexander-Arnold's curling free-kick to head the ball home, leaving flat-footed Brighton defender Adam Webster as helpless as a schoolkid against a Harlem Globetrotter.

Six minutes later, the Netherlands centre-back left Lewis Dunk with a similar feeling as he timed his run to meet an Alexander-Arnold corner and powerfully nodded into the net.

Liverpool are head and shoulders above their opponents. Since start of last season, they have scored 29 headed goals in the top-flight which is 10 more than any other team.

Their season's tally makes impressive reading.

Played 14, won 12, drawn two and 38 points was City's haul at the same stage last season. Liverpool were a further two points behind and would push their rivals all the way to the last day.

Played 14, won 13, drawn one and 40 points is Liverpool's position this time around. However, City are 11 points behind and facing a struggle to still be in the title race by next May let along the final round of fixtures.

Liverpool made things a little nervy for themselves when goalkeeper Alisson was sent off with 14 minutes remaining for handling outside the penalty area and Dunk pulled one back for Brighton.

One of the few question marks over Liverpool this season has been their defence – they have now not kept a clean sheet for 12 games.

But the embodiment of the confident swagger of Klopp's side is Van Dijk. Jordan Henderson might hold Liverpool's captain's armband but the Dutchman is the spiritual leader of the side. 

Van Dijk is never outpaced. Van Dijk is never outmuscled. Van Dijk is never ruffled.

He organised, marshalled and kept his composure in last few minutes. Brighton were not going to be allowed to pass and get an equaliser – no matter what. 

Klopp's own Red Machine might still need some fine tuning and there will be the odd bump in the road, but after going so close last season it appears they will reach their destination this time.

Pep Guardiola insists Manchester City cannot think about the Premier League title after losing further ground on Liverpool with a 2-2 draw at Newcastle United.

City led twice at St James' Park through Raheem Sterling's 15th goal of the season for club and country and a blistering Kevin De Bruyne strike.

But after Jetro Willems, a goalscorer at Anfield earlier this season, had his latest say in the title race, Jonjo Shelvey matched the quality of De Bruyne's intervention with a stunning leveller two minutes from time.

Guardiola saw his side embark on a 14-match winning run after a 2-1 defeat at Newcastle in January that appeared terminal to their hopes of retaining the title.

After falling 11 points behind Jurgen Klopp's men - 2-1 winners over Brighton and Hove Albion despite having Alisson sent off - the City boss does not believe contemplating similar heroics should be at the forefront of his players' minds as they turn towards a week featuring games against Burnley and Manchester United.

"It's not the time. We have another opponent in front of us," he said when asked about City's fading prospects of a third title in a row at the post-match news conference.

"We now have to try and win games, win games and see what happens.

"It's not a good idea to think about the Premier League and how many points. We have to win games. If we do not win, it will be more difficult.

"Last season [against Newcastle] we played bad. Today I think we did everything to win the game and that is the truth.

"We played on a good level, defending, set pieces and everything. We moved the ball well, we found the spaces outside and we arrived in front of the goal many, many times.

"Unfortunately, we could not score [enough to win]."

Having two leads cancelled out swiftly represented a new frailty for a City side that has looked increasingly vulnerable over recent weeks, but Guardiola was keen to credit Newcastle.

"It's better to score one, take time and score the second one. But they play," he said.

"In one situation, they defend deep and make a good action; in the second one, Shelvey puts it in the corner."

Asked whether former Liverpool midfielder Shelvey had done his part in securing a first league title for 30 years on Merseyside, Newcastle manager Steve Bruce replied: "I don't know about that!

"I do know it's his second goal in [four] games and, very quietly over the last few weeks, I've been very, very pleased with Jonjo.

"He's responded to what we want to do, and we all know he's got that ability in his locker."

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