Pep Guardiola challenged Manchester City to make history after the champions equalled the Premier League record for most wins in a season with an imperious 4-1 victory at West Ham on Sunday.
Guardiola’s side now have 30 wins this term, matching the record set by Chelsea last season, and will take sole possession of the milestone with one more success in their last three games.
Sweeping West Ham aside with their trademark swagger, City went ahead through Leroy Sane before an own goal from their former defender Pablo Zabaleta doubled the lead.
Aaron Cresswell’s free-kick reduced the deficit before half-time, but Gabriel Jesus and Fernandinho netted for City after the interval.
Simply untouchable for most of the season, City are bidding to cement their status as one of the all-time great Premier League teams by rewriting the record books.
“We have a chance to be the best team in the history of England, with more points, we are trying to do it next Sunday [against Huddersfield],” Guardiola said.
“Always you have to play for something. Once we won the Premier League, the target was the numbers.
“We have a chance to break the records, but it’s not easy, we have to play good. It’s good to fight.”
City have scored 102 league goals in 35 games, making them the fastest English top-flight side to reach the century mark since Everton in 1931-32.
They are one goal short of the Premier League record of 103 set by Chelsea in 2009-10.
One win needed
Guardiola’s team also need three more points to eclipse Chelsea’s 95-point Premier League record from 2004-05.
“We are professional. We didn’t celebrate the moment we were champions,” Guardiola added.
“The numbers are there. Hopefully we will achieve one more win to get 96 points.”
Ominously for their title rivals, Guardiola believes City can be even better next season.
“Always you can do better. Football is never done, otherwise I wouldn’t be here next season,” he said.
“Next season the target will be to keep this consistency. In the recent past, teams couldn’t do that.
“Our level was so high, but there are 20 guys winning the Premier League for the first time. We are a young team. That’s good.”
West Ham have won once in their last eight league fixtures and sit just three points above the relegation zone.
“I’m not as anxious as when I first came in because we were in the bottom three then,” Hammers boss David Moyes said.
“If we can win one of our home games I think we’ll be OK.”