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Rodri praises Arsenal’s efforts but highlights crucial difference with brutal reality check

Rodri believes Arsenal lacked the mentality to assert themselves in the Premier League title race.

Manchester City won their fourth consecutive league title with a 3-1 home victory over West Ham on Sunday afternoon, leapfrogging rivals Arsenal into first place.

Rodri gave Arsenal a brutal reality check after City's title win

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Rodri gave Arsenal a brutal reality check after City’s title winCredit: Getty

The Gunners claimed a 2-1 victory over Everton on the final day, but ultimately finished two points behind Pep Guardiola’s side.

Phil Foden’s brace put Man City ahead, before Rodri – the man of the big occasion – produced a fine effort to wrap up the victory.

The celebrations then resumed at the Etihad Stadium, with City enjoying the results of their hard work during the 2023/24 campaign.

Arsenal brought them closer, but according to Rodri the difference between the two sides became clear during their 0-0 draw in March.

Asked why City remain so hungry, Rodri told Optus Sport: “To be honest, I think it’s here (points to his head). It’s the mentality.

“(There are) great players throughout the league, at all clubs.

“Arsenal also deserve (to win), they had an incredible season, but I think that was the difference (points to his head again).

“When they came here, they played us at the Etihad, I saw them and said: ‘Ah, these guys, they don’t want to beat us, they just want a draw.’

The midfielder scored a crucial goal to help seal the title for Pep Guardiola's side.

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The midfielder scored a crucial goal to help seal the title for Pep Guardiola’s side.Credit: Getty
Man City managed to beat Arsenal for the title by two points

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Man City managed to beat Arsenal for the title by two points

“And that mentality, I don’t think we would do things the same way.

“And we caught them. In the end, if you give us a point, we will win the last seven or eight games, even if it is very difficult. So I think (winning the title) depends on the mentality. “

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Arsenal’s brilliance is what finally made City dig deep and, when asked if he thought City would win the title after that goalless draw, Rodri added: “We believed in it. But you believe you did it, and we know how hard it is to do it.

“We have to go out on all pitches, the match against Tottenham, we had never won there so it is not easy to implement.

“But every season, the manager, the players find a way to do it. Even me, comparing my first season that I came here, we grow a lot in that sense (mental strength).”

The title victory put City in the history books as no team had ever won four in a row, while it was Guardiola’s sixth title in seven seasons.

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