Pep Guardiola was beginning to look towards the Premier League title after Manchester City beat Fulham 3-0.
City were frustrated by their relegation-threatened hosts in the first half, but blitzed them after the break with three goals inside 15 minutes.
They comfortably saw out the rest of the game, opening up a 17-point lead at the top of the table. They have eight games to go, while nearest challengers Manchester United have 10 games left.
Now, it seems a case of when, not if, City will regain the title that they relinquished to Liverpool last season.
Indeed, Guardiola admitted that they are now closer to the trophy – and he found the manner of their performance “so satisfying”.
He told BT Sport: “A great performance against a team like this who are so physical and have good ideas.
“It was an important victory for us. Eight games left and we are closer…
“Our pressing for the second and third goal… It was so difficult and we make a good game.
“Of course, the dynamic of the season is good. We didn’t concede so that’s good. So satisfying.
“Now we have two finals in the Champions League and the FA Cup.”
Guardiola discusses importance of Aguero goal
The cherry on top of the cake for City was Sergio Aguero’s return to the scoresheet, more than a year after his last Premier League goal.
Injuries have caused problems for City’s all-time leading scorer this season, but a penalty allowed him to get off the mark for the league campaign.
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Guardiola noted the importance of both of his strikers – Aguero and Gabriel Jesus – getting among the goals.
He said: “It was important for him. To score goals is everything for him and Gabriel as well.
“All the team was brilliant.
“Wins help to win the next game – of course, a different competition [the Champions League Round of 16 second leg against Borussia Monchengladbach]. There is not a second option in the next game.
“We will prepare our best and try to do well to get in the next stage.”
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