Pep Guardiola warns Manchester City there is no margin for error
Pep Guardiola admitted Manchester City are playing sudden death football as they attempt to challenge on three fronts.
Guardiola saw City win 2-0 at struggling Sunderland on Sunday to leave themselves eight points adrift of leaders Chelsea.
The Catalan knows that gap may ultimately prove too big to bridge and is equally aware that they cannot afford to lose any games in the league, FA Cup or Champions League as the season draws to a close.
He said: "It's a pity that the distance between Chelsea is so big, but that's true. I feel we are playing quite well and that's why we are getting results.
"But now, of course, we are in a position when you arrive in March and April, every game if you win, you stay; if you lose, you are out.
"In the Premier League, in the cup, in the Champions League, the players know, we know, the club knows, if we are not able to win the next game, we will be out.
"I have said many times for the last month, we don't think too much about the big targets and the big objectives, it's just to try to win the next game. That's the way we have focused for the last month and a half, two months."
City laboured to break the deadlock at the Stadium of Light until Sergio Aguero struck for the fifth time in three games just before the break, and Leroy Sane made sure just before the hour-mark on a day when David Silva turned in a captain's performance.
Guardiola said: "David is one one of the best players I have ever trained in my life, so I am a lucky guy to be with him, a lucky guy. One of the reasons I decided to come here was because I was pleased to be with him."
Opposite number David Moyes was encouraged by Sunderland's first-half display, but knows they are deep in trouble with six points now separating them from safety.
He said: "I think we have got a good chance because there was nothing you could question about the players today about their energy or their attitude. You couldn't even look over your shoulder at anybody because they were terrific in what they tried to give.
"What you could question at times was our quality, what we did with the ball at times."