Daniel Farke will celebrate Norwich City's surprise victory over Premier League champions Manchester City with "a coffee and a piece of cake" after training on Sunday.

Norwich produced a brilliant display to see off City 3-2 at Carrow Road on Saturday and claim their second win of a vibrant start to the 2019-20 season that has included some good moments in defeats to Liverpool, Chelsea and West Ham.

Kenny McLean and Todd Cantwell put the Canaries two goals ahead, before Sergio Aguero reduced the arrears on the stroke of half-time.

Teemu Pukki restored Norwich's advantage after Emiliano Buendia caught Nicolas Otamendi napping, with Rodri's late effort proving solely a consolation for Pep Guardiola's side.

Asked how he would celebrate the famous victory, Farke said: "To be honest, it was a really complicated week and I'm happy when I'm back on my sofa this evening because I'm too old and too exhausted to celebrate.

"We have training Sunday morning and we have to analyse the game so for that I have to watch the game back.

"So it will be a pretty late night for me to be prepared, but hopefully on Sunday afternoon on the sofa I can have a coffee and a piece of cake, I will celebrate with this.

"All our supporters are definitely allowed to celebrate and enjoy this day because if you don't value these moments you lose your motivation, but we will definitely stay calm."

Norwich were without seven players due to injury and Farke felt that provided additional sweetness to an unexpected success, though he always sets his team out to "reach something excellent".

"It is definitely a proud night, without any doubt," he said. "To win against the best team in the world, with world-class players, a world-class coach, a top club, as Norwich City, as a newly promoted side who has no chance to spend an unbelievable amount of money in the summer in a situation with an unbelievable amount of injured players, it's really special.

"I always believe in my players. We know we were not the favourites and everything has to come together. But we play football to reach something excellent, not just realistic things.

"We have had several good games but the outcome in terms of points was not perfect because we played some really decent sides and so you struggle with self-confidence.

"It was important to give them back the belief and some self-confidence - but it seems like we found the right words and decisions.

"Against such quality you have to play slightly different because you can't control possession against Manchester City. We had to try and allow Manchester City possession in certain areas and with certain players.

"It was complicated to prepare this game, but my lads fulfilled everything we tried to work on in the last few days in a perfect way."

Pep Guardiola congratulated Norwich City after they inflicted one of the biggest shock results in Premier League history on champions Manchester City.

Norwich were without 11 players due to injury and head coach Daniel Farke had to include two goalkeepers as substitutes in order to fill his bench, but they pulled off a stunning 3-2 home win.

The Canaries led 2-0 thanks to goals from Kenny McLean and Todd Cantwell and held their nerve despite Sergio Aguero halving the deficit before half-time.

Nicolas Otamendi's error led to Teemu Pukki making it 3-1 and although Rodri's late strike set up a nervous finale, the promoted outfit were able to hold on for a famous victory.

City's first loss in the Premier League since January leaves them five points behind Liverpool, who have won all five of their games in the 2019-20 campaign, as Guardiola's men seek a third consecutive title.

"Sometimes games like this happen – we had our chances to score but didn't, so congratulations to Norwich," Guardiola said. "It is football – we had many opportunities today, they had three or four and scored three goals.

"The first one was a set-piece we didn't defend, the second we were caught on the counter-attack and the third came from a mistake, but we know what we are as a team, we know what we have done and we know what we are going to do.

"I love my players and it's a pleasure to be with them. They didn't create so many chances, but they got three goals – we played Bournemouth and they had more chances than Norwich did today, but we won that game – football can sometimes do this."

Guardiola sprang a surprise by starting with Kevin De Bruyne on the bench and while he introduced the Belgium star in the second half, along with Gabriel Jesus and Riyad Mahrez, City could not find an equaliser.

"Even at 2-0, we knew we were still in it because we can create a lot of chances in a short space of time," Guardiola added.

"But the third goal hurt us because we had started [the second half] well and we were there, but in the end it didn't happen. In football you can't always avoid mistakes.

"They are a really good team with good players who have quality, we saw that in the Championship last year, they were clinical today.

"We did not have urgency in the final third that we normally have. Even at 3-2 we had chances to make it 3-3 – this team never gives up and that's why we have done what we have done."

Pep Guardiola insists he does not need to bring in defensive reinforcements in the January transfer window despite Manchester City's surprise 3-2 loss at Norwich City. 

Aymeric Laporte is expected to be out until the new year after undergoing surgery on a knee injury, with the Premier League champions losing at Carrow Road in his absence on Saturday.

Goals from Kenny McLean, Todd Cantwell and Teemu Pukki earned the injury-hit Canaries a famous win, while Sergio Aguero and Rodri were on target for City.

Before the game Guardiola indicated City would not enter the market to replace Laporte despite being left with only two senior centre-backs, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi, after the departure of club captain Vincent Kompany.

Stones and Otamendi were both at fault in a dreadful defensive performance as City lost in the league for the first time since January, with McLean's headed opener coming from a corner.

Asked if City have a problem defending near-post corners in particular, Guardiola said: "In four seasons, yes. Our quality of play is different but we defended incredibly well in the past."

Guardiola, who surprisingly left talisman Kevin De Bruyne on the bench, feels Stones and Otamendi can still form a reliable partnership in the wake of their error-strewn display, while Kyle Walker was involved in conceding a cheap second goal to Cantwell.

"It's football," he added. "We talk and improve from this, Kyle knows it and this happens sometimes, try to improve for the next time.

"They [Stones and Otamendi] play how many times together? A lot, they are the centre-backs we have. Maybe Fernandinho or Rodri can play there. I'm not worried, it's football. How many games John and Nico played in more than three games together? A lot.

"Normally I count their chances and I think they didn't create too much, three goals, I don't know from how many shots on target but I don't have that feeling they had many, many chances, but sometimes this happens."

An injury crisis left Norwich without 11 players and Daniel Farke could not even fill his bench of seven substitutes without including two goalkeepers.

"Of course it is special day for us and for the club," he told BBC Sport. "Against one of the best teams in the world and when we have so many injuries.

"We had to be special in our plan for City because they are the best team in the world, but we had setbacks too with our injuries.

"We deserve the win, we were exceptional."

Manchester City fans experienced that rare feeling of Premier League defeat under Pep Guardiola as Norwich City overcame the odds in sensational style at Carrow Road on Saturday.

Many were suggesting the heavily depleted Canaries' best hope was to avoid a cricket scoreline against the defending champions.

But a clinical performance, coupled with some questionable Man City defending, saw Daniel Farke's side secure a memorable 3-2 victory, with Kenny McLean, Todd Cantwell and the in-form Teemu Pukki on the scoresheet for the hosts.

The loss marked an end to a 25-match unbeaten streak against promoted sides for Man City, while Norwich had lost 11 of their previous 12 encounters against the team defending the Premier League title – their last such victory coming against the same opponents in May 2013.

It was an unlucky 13th Premier League defeat for Man City since Guardiola took over ahead of the 2016-17 campaign and their first since January.

We look at their most surprising top-flight reverses under the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach.

Leicester City 4-2 Man City (10/12/2016)

It is easy to forget Guardiola's maiden campaign at the Etihad Stadium was not all sunshine and roses. A week on from a 3-1 home reverse to Chelsea, City were turned over by a Jamie Vardy inspired Leicester. The Foxes were three to the good inside 20 minutes as Vardy scored twice either side of an Andy King effort, with the ex-England striker completing his hat-trick in the 78th minute. Late goals from Aleksandar Kolarov and Nolito did little to ease the disappointment.

Everton 4-0 Man City (15/01/2017) 

Just a month later, Guardiola was left accepting his side's chances of defending the title were over after a shambolic performance at a rampant Everton. Romelu Lukaku and Belgium team-mate Kevin Mirallas assisted each other to put the Toffees 2-0 up by the 47th minute and late goals from Tom Davies and Ademola Lookman compounded the visitors' Merseyside misery.

Man City 2-3 Crystal Palace (22/12/18)

A 2-0 loss at Chelsea a couple of weeks previous had put paid to City's chances on going unbeaten in the Premier League, but this was an altogether more shocking defeat. Ilkay Gundogan's 27th-minute opener suggested a routine win was on the cards but two goals in as many minutes from Jeffrey Schlupp and Andros Townsend – the latter an unbelievable 30-yard volley – put Palace ahead at the break. Luka Milivojevic's penalty cemented the lead and not even Kevin De Bruyne's late strike could salvage a point for City. Eagles boss Roy Hodgson would describe the result as "one of those bonanza days".

Leicester City 2-1 Man City (26/12/18)

Four days later, an unhappy festive season was completed with another defeat thanks to familiar Foxes foes. Marc Albrighton cancelled out Bernardo Silva's 14th-minute strike and a late stunner from Ricardo Pereira gave Leicester a late Christmas present. Fabian Delph received the one card he would not want to get in December when he saw red for a late tackle on Pereira in the closing stages.

Newcastle United 2-1 Man City (29/01/2019)

Sergio Aguero, as he always seems to, scored against the Magpies with a first-minute goal and he saw a second soon chalked off for offside. However, a couple of defensive errors enabled Salomon Rondon and Matt Ritchie to score – the second netting from the spot – and City slipped to defeat at St James' Park.

Norwich City 3-2 Man City (14/09/2019)

Norwich and boss Daniel Farke drew plenty of smiles for the light-hearted way they dealt with a grim-looking injury list prior to a visit from the champions. Pre-match odds of 22-1 underlined the task the home side were facing, but McLean took advantage of City's slack defending at a corner to head Norwich into an 18th-minute lead. More sloppy work at the back led to Pukki brilliantly teeing up Cantwell to double the lead, before Aguero nodded home before the break to bring the champions back into the game. Comical work from Nicolas Otamendi led to Emiliano Buendia teeing up Pukki for Norwich's third. Rodri's drilled strike late on set up a nervy finish, but Norwich held on for the win.

Manchester City lost in the Premier League for the first time since January as a 3-2 defeat at injury-hit Norwich City left them five points behind leaders Liverpool in the title race.

The Reds extended their perfect run to five wins from five with a 3-1 comeback victory at home to Newcastle United in Saturday's early kick-off.

And that victory was given even more importance when the Canaries rocked the champions at Carrow Road despite being without 11 players who are in the treatment room.

There were also big wins for Tottenham and Chelsea, Manchester United handed Leicester City their first defeat of the season, Southampton won at 10-man Sheffield United and Burnley struck late to claim a 1-1 draw at Brighton and Hove Albion.

LAPORTE LOSS HURTS CHAMPIONS

Aymeric Laporte has been ruled out for six months after surgery on his right knee and City's diabolical defensive performance indicated the centre-back will be horribly missed.

Kyle Walker, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi were all at fault at various times as goals from Kenny McLean, Todd Cantwell and August's Premier League player of the month Teemu Pukki earned Norwich a deserved victory against massive odds.

Pep Guardiola began with Kevin De Bruyne on the bench ahead of the Champions League starting next week and the decision backfired as City looked lost without their midfield talisman, although Sergio Aguero and Rodri struck to spark hopes of a comeback.

It is early days in the title race, but Liverpool are already looking very strong while City's weaknesses were ruthlessly exposed by Norwich in their second home win of the season.


FIVE IN A ROW FOR REDS

Newcastle United took a shock early lead at Anfield thanks to a thunderbolt from left-back Jetro Willems, but that proved as good as it got for Steve Bruce's men as they went down 3-1 to leaders Liverpool.

Sadio Mane was inspirational as the Senegal star scored twice to turn the game on its head, his second thanks to poor goalkeeping from Martin Dubravka, before Mohamed Salah wrapped things up.

With a perfect record from their five fixtures in 2019-20, Liverpool are up to 14 straight wins in the Premier League – and they are the first team in the competition's history to do so scoring more than once in each game.

This result moved them five points clear at the top and the European champions could hardly be in better shape ahead of beginning their Champions League defence away to Napoli on Tuesday.


SPURS AND CHELSEA RUN RIOT

At half-time, Spurs were 4-0 up at home to Crystal Palace while Chelsea were 3-0 up away to winless Wolves, Fiyako Tomori netting a stunner with Abraham scoring at least twice for the third Premier League game in a row.

He went one better after the break to set a record for the Blues, though a touch of the shine was taken off his performance when he put through an own goal to hand Wolves a consolation, which they added to through Patrick Cutrone.

Abraham, now the top scorer this season with seven strikes, is the first player in the history of the Premier League to score a hat-trick as well as an own goal in the same game, with fellow England talent Mason Mount also on target late on.

Son Heung-min proved unstoppable for the Eagles, with the South Korea star involved in Spurs' first three goals before Harry Kane set up Erik Lamela to make it four.

It was a much-needed three points for Spurs, who were on a three-game winless run, with a trip to Olympiacos in the Champions League to come next for Mauricio Pochettino's side.


RASHFORD PENALTY SEES UNITED BOUNCE BACK

Like Spurs, United had failed to win any of their three league games going into the international break, but they showed resilience to edge a slim victory at home to Leicester despite being without Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial, Luke Shaw and Jesse Lingard.

Rashford won an early penalty when he was clumsily brought down by Caglar Soyuncu and, unlike in their 2-1 loss at home to Palace, this time he converted from 12 yards to condemn the Foxes to their first defeat of the season.

Moussa Djenepo's excellent goal earned Southampton a 1-0 win at Bramall Lane, where the Blades were cut down to 10 men when substitute striker Billy Sharp was dismissed for a challenge on Stuart Armstrong.

Brighton looked to be heading for their first home league win since March 2 thanks to Neal Maupay's controlled volley but Burnley substitute Jeff Hendrick marked his 100th Premier League appearance with a stunning late equaliser.

In the first minute of added time, the Republic of Ireland midfielder collected a lay-off from Matej Vydra to rifle a first-time drive into the bottom-right corner from 25 yards.

Norwich City shocked Premier League champions Manchester City 3-2 at Carrow Road despite the Canaries coping with a massive injury crisis.

The visitors' first league loss since January was self-inflicted as defenders made regular errors, but Norwich, whose goals came from Kenny McLean, Todd Cantwell and Teemu Pukki, fully deserved their second home win since sealing promotion.

Rodri drilled home with two minutes to go to give City hope of a point but defeat on Saturday leaves them five points behind Liverpool in the table, with the Reds holding a 100 per cent record after five Premier League games.

Norwich were without 11 players due to injury and had to name two goalkeepers on the bench, but Daniel Farke's men took a shock lead in the 18th minute.

City's weakness from near-post corners is well known and when Emiliano Buendia floated Norwich's first set-piece into that area, McLean ran into space to power home a superb header.

It got worse for the champions 10 minutes later. Rodri lost a 50-50 on halfway and City were immediately exposed with Pukki able to easily advance and square for Cantwell to score.

Raheem Sterling's header hit the post as City aimed to respond and Sergio Aguero halved the deficit before the break by nodding home a perfectly placed left-wing Bernardo Silva centre.

Nicolas Otamendi's moment of madness presented Norwich with a gift of a third after the restart, Buendia robbing the defender and feeding Pukki for an easy finish - his eighth goal of the season for club and country.

Pep Guardiola sent on Kevin De Bruyne, Gabriel Jesus and Riyad Mahrez from the bench but the cavalry could not rescue the champions, although Rodri's 20-yard drive flew past Tim Krul to leave Norwich to see out a nervy finale.


What does it mean? City must enter transfer market after Laporte news

The news Aymeric Laporte could miss six months was a huge blow to a squad still missing the steady leadership of Vincent Kompany, who was not replaced when his contract expired.

John Stones has been out of sorts for some time and Otamendi also feels like a player who always has a mistake in him, with Guardiola possessing no specialist cover for either centre-back.

Guardiola told reporters before this game that City would not buy a defender in January but he has to reconsider after this shambolic defensive performance, although take nothing away from Norwich. They were huge outsiders and produced one of the league's biggest ever shocks.


Prolific Pukki cannot stop scoring

Since May 5, Finland forward Pukki has played 10 games for either Norwich or his country, failing to find the net in only one of those appearances. At 29 his career has taken the long way round to reach the Premier League but Pukki looks at home.

Goals are often the biggest problem for promoted sides but in Pukki, the Premier League's player of the month for August, they have a striker they can rely on, while he showed an unselfish streak to set up Cantwell for the Canaries' second.


Otamendi loses the plot

One mistake in a game can be forgiven but Otamendi made two awful errors in incredibly quick succession. Having played a poor pass to the similarly sloppy Stones that Norwich failed to capitalise on, he switched off immediately to allow Norwich to net the goal that effectively killed the game.

Although the Argentina defender started 14 league games last term, Stones and Otamendi does not look like a partnership that will help City to win the Premier League title again.


What's next?

City will want a better defensive display when they open their Champions League campaign away to Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday. They then take on Watford at home next weekend, when Norwich travel to Burnley.

Tammy Abraham hit his first Premier League hat-trick as Chelsea routed Wolves, while Liverpool extended their 100 per cent record at the top of the table.

The England striker became Chelsea's youngest hat-trick scorer in the Premier League era and also netted at the wrong end as Nuno Espirito Santo's side crumbled to a 5-2 loss at Molineux.

There was a heavy victory for Tottenham, who hammered Crystal Palace 4-0 at home, and Harry Maguire helped Manchester United beat his old club Leicester City 1-0 at Old Trafford.

Elsewhere, Southampton triumphed 1-0 at 10-man Sheffield United and Burnley struck late to claim a 1-1 draw at Brighton and Hove Albion on another busy Saturday of Premier League action.


FIVE IN A ROW FOR REDS

Newcastle United took a shock early lead at Anfield thanks to a thunderbolt from left-back Jetro Willems, but that proved as good as it got for Steve Bruce's men as they went down 3-1 to leaders Liverpool.

Sadio Mane was inspirational as the Senegal star scored twice to turn the game on its head, his second thanks to poor goalkeeping from Martin Dubravka, before Mohamed Salah wrapped things up.

With a perfect record from their five fixtures in 2019-20, Liverpool are up to 14 straight wins in the Premier League – and they are the first team in the competition's history to do so scoring more than once in each game.

This result moved them five points clear at the top, although Manchester City are at a depleted Norwich City later in the day, and the European champions could hardly be in better shape ahead of beginning their Champions League defence away to Napoli on Tuesday.


SPURS AND CHELSEA RUN RIOT

At half-time, Spurs were 4-0 up at home to Crystal Palace while Chelsea were 3-0 up away to winless Wolves, Fiyako Tomori netting a stunner with Abraham scoring at least twice for the third Premier League game in a row.

He went one better after the break to set a record for the Blues, though a touch of the shine was taken off his performance when he put through an own goal to hand Wolves a consolation, which they added to through Patrick Cutrone.

Abraham, now the top scorer this season with seven strikes, is the first player in the history of the Premier League to score a hat-trick as well as an own goal in the same game, with fellow England talent Mason Mount also on target late on.

Son Heung-min proved unstoppable for the Eagles, with the South Korea star involved in Spurs' first three goals before Harry Kane set up Erik Lamela to make it four.

It was a much-needed three points for Spurs, who were on a three-game winless run, with a trip to Olympiacos in the Champions League to come next for Mauricio Pochettino's side.


RASHFORD PENALTY SEES UNITED BOUNCE BACK

Like Spurs, United had failed to win any of their three league games going into the international break, but they showed resilience to edge a slim victory at home to Leicester despite being without Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial, Luke Shaw and Jesse Lingard.

Rashford won an early penalty when he was clumsily brought down by Caglar Soyuncu and, unlike in their 2-1 loss at home to Palace, this time he converted from 12 yards to condemn the Foxes to their first defeat of the season.

Moussa Djenepo's excellent goal earned Southampton a 1-0 win at Bramall Lane, where the Blades were cut down to 10 men when substitute striker Billy Sharp was dismissed for a challenge on Stuart Armstrong.

Brighton looked to be heading for their first home league win since March 2 thanks to Neal Maupay's controlled volley but Burnley substitute Jeff Hendrick marked his 100th Premier League appearance with a stunning late equaliser.

In the first minute of added time, the Republic of Ireland midfielder collected a lay-off from Matej Vydra to rifle a first-time drive into the bottom-right corner from 25 yards.

Manchester City will do all they can to help Raheem Sterling get to the same level as "absolute legends" Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, says Pep Guardiola.

The England international has been in outstanding form in the early stages of the 2019-20 season, following on from two highly productive campaigns that saw him score 35 league goals as City won back-to-back Premier League titles.

Sterling also found the net in Euro 2020 qualifying wins over Bulgaria and Kosovo while away on international duty, though Guardiola played down comparisons to superstars Messi and Ronaldo ahead of his side's clash with Norwich City.

Still, the Spaniard sees no reason why the former Liverpool forward, 24, should not have ambitions to match the lofty standards set by the duo.

"Right now he is not in that level, I wish maybe in the future," Guardiola told the media.

"It would be a dream for him, for all of us and for him, but right now these two guys the last decade have scored 50, 60 goals every season and I don't know how many assists.

"They have won the Ballon d'Or and all the individual prizes every single season, except maybe last season.

"So the consistency of these two guys – they are legends, they are something unique in world football. And if Raheem can target that level, wow.

"We will be here to help him and of course he can do it, I will not be the guy to say don't think about that. No, absolutely not, I want it.

"But right now, nobody, not in this club but in all the clubs in the world, nobody can compare to what they have done every single week for 10 years. They [Messi and Ronaldo] are absolute legends and nobody can compare, nobody."

England manager Gareth Southgate said after the win over Bulgaria that the biggest change in Sterling's attitude had been his desire to score goals.

"I think with Brendan Rodgers in Liverpool, he played incredibly well, and with the national team he's played incredibly well," Guardiola said.

"So, I think his style, his desire, I think, the most I saw from the beginning is the fact he has an incredible mentality, he's a winning player.

"Before he made good actions but didn't finish too much. And now he's a player who can win games for himself."

Aymeric Laporte's long-term knee injury has hurt Manchester City, Pep Guardiola has conceded, but he does not expect the club to sign a replacement in January.

Guardiola confirmed on Friday that Laporte would be out for up to six months after he damaged cartilage and the lateral meniscus in his right knee during City's 4-0 win against Brighton and Hove Albion on August 31.

The centre-back, who received a long-awaited France call-up prior to his injury, has undergone surgery but like team-mate Leroy Sane is now set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

John Stones – who has not featured since the opening fixture – and Nicolas Otamendi are now City's only fit senior centre-backs, with midfielder Fernandinho seemingly set to provide a third option.

But despite City's lack of depth at the heart of their defence, Guardiola does not foresee the club pursuing a January signing.

"It is hard, the same as Leroy. We are disappointed for him, for both of them," Guardiola told a news conference ahead of Saturday's game against Norwich City.

"Leroy is important. Aymeric in that position is important too, for his left foot and his personality. Unfortunately he is injured. So we're going to live without him for a long time and we have enough resources to move forward and see what we can do.

"My advice to you is not to write too many names about the winter transfer window, because you are going to make a mistake. I don't think it's going to happen.

"I heard already we are interested in this player or the other player. I would like to say to all the clubs in the world don't be nervous, because we are not interested in any players or central defenders in Europe.

"We are going to wait with the players we have, with the two central defenders, with Fernandinho, with Eric Garcia and Taylor Harwood-Bellis, even some players in different positions we can use there. We're going to move forward."

Stones was not in England's latest squad as he continued his comeback from a thigh strain, while the 25-year-old was sidelined as Vincent Kompany was preferred as Laporte's partner in last term's run-in.

Guardiola, though, has no doubt in Stones' ability to fill the void left by Laporte.

"He's going to play incredible this period, while Laporte is not with us. He is going to play well. I don't have any doubts about his quality," Guardiola added of Stones.

"The same case with Otamendi. I don't know how many games they play together but I think a lot. Before Aymeric came they were a partnership and they played many games."

Daniel Farke revealed the sobering state of his injury list could leave Norwich without up to 11 players for Saturday's visit of champions Manchester City, but he remained surprisingly chirpy given the situation.

Farke's pre-match news conference on Friday was verging on farcical, as the German steadily went through a list of players who are either injured or a doubt for the match against City.

The Canaries' defence has been utterly decimated by the crisis, as they will definitely be without Max Aarons, Timm Klose and Christoph Zimmermann, while Grant Hanley is only fit enough for a place on the bench, Ben Godfrey is a major doubt after sustaining a groin strain on England Under-21 duty and Tim Krul is struggling.

That leaves them with only Jamal Lewis, Sam Byram and Philip Heise as recognised first-team defenders.

They also have problems in midfield, with Tom Trybull, Mario Vrancic, Moritz Leitner and Onel Hernandez ruled out, and Patrick Roberts is ineligible against his parent club.

Despite the issues, Farke has no plans to go all-out defensive in an attempt to salvage a point.

"Manchester City are exceptional, they are so special," Farke told reporters. "If you just try to park the bus then you have no chance.

"It is important that you have periods where you control the ball and are in possession. We will have to be top class in our defending and be disciplined.

"It will be also important that we bring our style and try to dominate possession and be good with the ball.

"Even if I wanted to, I can't park the bus because I have no defensive players anymore. We will have to concentrate on our skills.

"There were more lads today [Friday] on the physio bench than on the training pitch. It is a tricky situation for us.

"We are playing one of the best teams in the world, if not the best, and as a newly promoted side you always have to be at your best."

Farke, though, was still able to remain light-hearted about Norwich's situation.

"Our injury situation is not easy at the moment, but we will try to handle it anyhow. I will return to my darkened cave after this [news conference] and cry," he quipped.

Pep Guardiola is delighted with Raheem Sterling's form but has urged the Manchester City attacker to ignore comparisons to Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

The England international has starred for club and country this season with eight goals and three assists in seven matches.

Sterling earned plenty of plaudits following his man of the match display against Kosovo on Tuesday, with former City and England winger Trevor Sinclair claiming he is on the same level as Ronaldo and Messi.

Guardiola has played down the comparisons, however, believing that nobody can match the two players who have battled it out to be the world's best for more than a decade.

"I'm so happy for him, for the way he's playing here and national team, but hopefully he won't read or listen to these kind of things," Guardiola said at Friday's news conference. 

"Nobody can compare with Cristiano or Messi. 

"I don't know if he's the best in England. Since we're together, not just now, he's been incredible with his work ethic. He's a nice guy. I'm delighted for him."

Sterling has been responsible for five of City's 14 goals in their opening four Premier League matches, the reigning champions collecting 10 points from their opening run of fixtures.

Liverpool are two points better off with a perfect return but Guardiola insisted it is too early to call it a two-horse race at the summit, especially with the games now coming thick and fast.

Speaking ahead of City's trip to Norwich City on Saturday, Guardiola told reporters: "I'm not predicting. Every week there are incredible predictions - there's a tendency for that but we've played four league games and that's nothing.

"We start the real competition, we play Saturday, then travel, play Wednesday, land Thursday, Saturday we have Premier League and then we go to Preston to play in the EFL Cup. 

"Of the next five games we've got four away, so many things can happen. We've had two terrible injuries with Leroy [Sane] and Aymeric [Laporte]. 

"It's too early to say what is going to happen. Chelsea, United, Tottenham, Everton doing well, everything can happen, but it's four games. In February or March we can say better. Now it's just four games and it's nothing."

Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte will miss up to six months after undergoing surgery on his knee, manager Pep Guardiola has said.

The France centre-back damaged cartilage and the lateral meniscus in his right knee during City's 4-0 win against Brighton and Hove Albion on August 31 and had an operation four days later.

Guardiola on Friday confirmed the extent of Laporte's injury for the first time, with the 25-year-old not expected to play again in 2019.

Asked how long Laporte will be out, Guardiola told reporters at a news conference: "Long time. Five months, six months. Next year, sure."

Laporte's long-term lay-off leaves Guardiola short of options at the back, but John Stones is back in contention after recovering from a thigh problem that has kept him on the sidelines for the past five weeks.

Former Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany insisted John Stones will prove his quality and silence his critics.

Stones has won two Premier League titles among other honours since joining City from Everton in 2016, however, doubts remain over the England international's long-term credentials in Manchester.

Errors and a lack of consistency have raised questions over Stones, who started 20 league matches last season but missed most of the run-in as Pep Guardiola preferred Kompany.

However, Kompany – who has since departed City for Anderlecht in a player-coach role – backed the 25-year-old to prove his doubters wrong.

"I've always said John is one of the most talented defenders. He's got such a bright future," Kompany said.

"He's already achieved a lot, let's not forget that. He's not a young defender anymore that hasn't got any experience. He's a multiple Premier League-winning central defender that is growing.

"The one thing I wish for him is consistency - consistency of games and consistency of fitness - and then he will show the world how good he is.

"By the end of it, if City can win a Champions League or something, all of a sudden he'll be mentioned in a completely different category.

"He just has to get himself on the pitch, be himself and he'll be fine. I've not seen signs of weakness I need to be worried about.

"He's just a top-class defender. If now he gets to play games things will sort themselves out, no doubt."

Stones started in City's season-opening 5-0 rout of West Ham, however, a thigh injury has forced him to miss matches against Tottenham, Bournemouth and Brighton and Hove Albion.

Referees chief Mike Riley accepts VAR has missed four errors in the Premier League this season but promised officials are "constantly learning".

The new technology was introduced at the start of the 2019-20 campaign to mixed response, intervening on six occasions across the first four matchweeks after 227 reviews.

Much of the focus has been on incidents where VAR has not had an input, however, and Riley, manager of the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), acknowledged four mistakes in a meeting with the Premier League on Thursday.

He told Sky Sports: "We're learning as we go along and we're constantly improving as we go along.

"Undoubtedly, out of the four match rounds, there have been some really good examples where we have intervened. We've had six instances where the VAR has advised the referee and we've got a better decision as a result.

"What we've talked about are the four instances where the VAR didn't intervene and, had we done, we would have had a better understanding of the role VAR plays in the game."

Explaining the errors, he continued: "They're all about the judgement of the VAR and the process we adopt and then discussing those with the clubs, with the players, with the managers to make sure these really are examples where the VAR could have had a benefit and intervened and helped the referee on the day.

"It's a combination of factors. That's the fascinating thing as this project evolves. We're constantly learning as we do things.

"On occasion, it was a judgement decision the VAR made, on one, it was a process mistake, and on others, it was trying to protect the high bar we want to not disrupt the flow of the game.

"On these two occasions, actually, the judgement should have been that the high bar had been crossed, it was a clear and obvious error and the VAR could have advised the referee of that."

It is reported the four incidents Riley flagged up in the meeting were Jefferson Lerma's challenge on David Silva, Youri Tielemans' apparent stamp on Callum Wilson, Fabian Schar's goal for Newcastle United against Watford and Tom Trybull's trip on Sebastien Haller.

FABIAN SCHAR GOAL

The VAR was criticised when Gabriel Jesus had a goal disallowed for City as Aymeric Laporte appeared to handle against Tottenham. A similar incident went unpunished when Newcastle drew with Watford. Isaac Hayden knocked down Emil Krafth's cross with his arm for Schar to score and earn the Magpies a point.

TRYBULL ON HALLER

Haller netted the opener as West Ham defeated Norwich City 2-0 on August 31, but the margin of victory could have been wider. The Hammers should have had a penalty when Trybull tripped Haller as he advanced into the area, but no foul was given.

LERMA ON SILVA

The first error of the season came in Manchester City's 3-1 win at Bournemouth on August 25. Lerma clearly stepped on Silva's foot inside the area, but no penalty was given to the champions.

TIELEMANS ON WILSON

The only instance in which a player should have been sent off but was not saw an awful Tielemans challenge go over the ball onto Wilson's ankle, with not even a free-kick awarded. The Belgium midfielder went on to score in Leicester City's 3-1 win over Bournemouth.

NOTABLE NON-AWARDS

It appears the PGMOL were satisfied with several other high-profile incidents.

Pep Guardiola believed Rodri should have had a penalty against Tottenham when Erik Lamela pulled him to the ground, while Spurs themselves wanted a spot-kick as Jamaal Lascelles fell into a challenge on Harry Kane in Newcastle's away win the following week.

Gary Cahill was only shown a yellow card in Crystal Palace's shock victory at Manchester United despite appearing to be the last man as he tugged down Anthony Martial.

Arrigo Sacchi believes the Premier League is enjoying a "golden age" of coaching with Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Mauricio Pochettino.

Former AC Milan boss Sacchi, who won the European Cup in 1989 and 1990 with the Rossoneri, is seen as one of football's great innovators, yet he is watching English football with great admiration for the top managers.

Guardiola has guided Manchester City to consecutive Premier League titles, winning a treble last season, while Klopp's Liverpool defeated Pochettino's Tottenham in the 2018-19 Champions League final.

Sacchi told the Daily Mail: "[Guardiola, Klopp and Pochettino are] my favourites and all three have the same philosophical system, even though they are very different.

"England has a crazy, brilliant championship. It is experiencing a golden age."

The Italian, now 73, also drew comparisons between City, Liverpool and his great Milan side.

"Their football is similar to mine and I really appreciate their values, culture and mentality," Sacchi said. "My Milan team innovated, the teams of Guardiola and Klopp continue to innovate.

"They think like me. We have the duty to make the public enjoy football, to be excited by it. Making great football is more difficult than talking about it.

"I like the desire they have to dominate. Football must be domination and beauty, music and culture.

"I enjoy watching them. The problem in the Premier League is that they play too often and there is too much competition. Perhaps this is why the [England] national team never achieves great results."

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