"They had an outstanding season, I respect it a lot - I love it, actually".
Liverpool and City generally provide open, expansive games with goals aplenty, but this meeting was a boring affair short on flair and excitement.
And, despite Mahrez's miss, a point apiece was a fair result as both teams cancelled each other out, the draw leaving Liverpool in third, below Chelsea, with all three on 20 points. The Champions League exit to the Reds in April was one of the rare occasions when the City boss has chosen to try to tame the opposition, rather than steamroller them using his own attacking principles. So stick around and I'll give you instant highlights of the goals as they go in, along with the usual pre-match chat.
With Aguero off the pitch the responsibility was handed to Mahrez - after Jesus was seemingly told to stand down - but with Alisson going the right away he blazed over, making it three failures in his last six. I liked it, but if you want to win against City, you have to use a few of these half-chances. You need to finish. Pep Guardiola may well rue taking Sergio Aguero, his number one penalty taker, off earlier in the half but will take real positives from the game after some tough defeats against Liverpool this year.
"In no game we've played so far the game was that kind of level like it was today, even when we won 3-0 at home or 4-3 at home. Liverpool were an excellent team last season and since then they have bought some more incredible players to fight against us". Don't lose the ball in the wrong moment, otherwise you have big problems.
It is for both teams it was really intense and both showed respect for the other team.
"Both teams did well, and we were a bit lucky with the penalty of course". One situation and they are alone in front of your goalie, or alone in the box and they shoot and score an easy goal.
"We didn't concede many shots on target so this is key at Anfield and is quite special in terms of the environment".
"Well, we tried, the important thing is we tried", he said.