Grateful Guardiola unsure over long-term future at Manchester City

Manchester United will host Liverpool – the two sides are separated by just two points

City head to Stoke on Monday night looking to claim the first of the four remaining wins they need to secure the title.

Stoke tried to battle their way back into the game.

Stoke didn't threaten City goalkeeper Ederson Moraes once and will resume its bid to escape relegation with a home game against Everton on Saturday.

If not Jesus, then Pep Guardiola will likely turn to Sergio Aguero, who has led the line with distinction in his absence and already has 21 Premier League goals to his name this season.

The man they call Merlin banged in two goals to set rampant City on their way.

Pep Guardiola says he will not rush Benjamin Mendy back for Manchester City after six months on the sidelines following knee surgery however keen he is to play.

"I think when I play football I forget everything, it's good for me to play", he said.

"Sometimes you have to hold your hands up - that's why they're going to win the league and are in the race to win the Champions League".

The draw for the Champions League last eight takes place on Friday and Guardiola will watch it live, along with his first-team squad, at their warm weather training camp in Abu Dhabi, where City flew immediately following the Stoke win.

Skipper Vincent Kompany, who won the Premier League with City in 2012 and 2014, certainly understands the emotion that would be generated by winning the title by beating United.

Guardiola cited Spain's worldwide success with Premier League players. [They are] fighting to be in the Premier League. "Benjamin might think he is strong enough to play like before the injury but that is not going to happen". He doesn't speak too much but on the pitch, the moment the game is on, he steps forward.

Again, I keep going back to Stoke's terrible recent record against the big clubs and if they are going to lose this game by two or three, possibly more, then it's likely that Guardiola's men will score early. "If I go back to my own playing career, did anyone give Borussia Dortmund a chance against the great Juve side in 97?

Then it is best to play one game and rest for two because after six months you have to be careful to avoid a muscular injury". "It doesn't matter where we win it".

Manchester City's David Silva, right, celebrates scoring his second goal during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Manchester City at the Bet 365 Stadium in Stoke on Trent, England, Monday, March 12, 2018.