The English Premier League title race was never going to be easy for Manchester City, who were in the midst of a brutal Champions League campaign, when Pep Guardiola stepped down as manager of the reigning champions.
But the Catalan is back, and the Catalan boss is taking a much different approach to the Premier League in 2017.
His men have been playing with more urgency, and have been attacking more often in recent weeks, as Pep’s side have enjoyed the better of the three teams chasing a trophy.
Guardiola’s side will play at the same level as Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal, but they will need to take more risks in order to keep pace with the big boys.
This week’s EPL fixtures are set to feature the Premier Leagues biggest sides, with Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Man Utd all fighting for the title.
For Pep Guardiola, this is not just about his team’s form, but also the quality of opposition.
Guardians men’s side, Barcelona, will play in the Champions League, which will be played in mid-April, and this will be the first time he has ever won the competition.
The Portuguese is a big fan of the competition, having won four consecutive titles with Barca, and he will be looking to get back to the heights of those years.
The two sides face each other in the first leg on Saturday, April 7, when Guardiola’s side are looking to secure a first title since 2010.
The winner will face the winners of the Europa League, and if that title goes to Barcelona, Guardiola will be in good company with some of his old rivals, as the two sides will face each others’ title rivals, Manchester United and Chelsea.