Vincent Kompany has warned Manchester City's rivals that the
Premier League champions won't rest on their laurels as they aim
to follow their record-breaking season with another title
Pep Guardiola's side swept to the title last term with a record
100 points, amassing more wins and scoring more goals than any
previous champion in the Premier League era.
Inspired by Kevin De Bruyne, Sergio Aguero, Leroy Sane, Raheem
Sterling and David Silva, City's eye-catching style earned
comparisons with the finest teams in English football history.
But no team has successfully defended the Premier League title
since Manchester United in 2008 and 2009, while City were unable
to maintain the standards of their 2012 and 2014 title wins in
the campaigns that followed.
City captain Kompany admits his team lacked urgency and desire in
those failed title defences under Roberto Mancini and Manuel
Pellegrini, but the Belgian has sensed a far more focused
approach from Guardiola's group.
"Before saying anything or doing anything, you want to observe
and see if you see the same mistakes which we've done
previously," Kompany said.
"I've got to be honest, there was a feeling when we've won the
league previously, you came back in to the training sessions and
everybody was a little bit less intense, a little bit more smiles
and happiness, but a little bit less committed.
"Teams that actually wanted it more could hurt us. I came in to
training this time and it's completely different."
With Guardiola saying he is still "starving" for more success,
there appears to be little chance of a City letdown.
They have already made a positive impression ahead of the new
campaign by winning the Community Shield with an emphatic 2-0
victory over Chelsea at Wembley on Sunday.
That was the perfect preparation for Sunday's Premier League
opener at Arsenal and Kompany added: "Number one, we realise this
is precious and we want to hold on to it.
"Number two, we went into the game with Chelsea - we lost two
Community Shields before - and this was a strong Chelsea team. We
played really well against them and that, for me, is a great
- 'Of course we can improve' -
City were so strong last term that Guardiola has needed to make
only one major close-season signing -- landing Algeria winger
Riyad Mahrez from Leicester in a £60 million deal.
And City defender Kyle Walker epitomised the squad's hunger for
more silverware by cutting short his post-World Cup holiday to
return to training ahead of the Community Shield.
Walker had just two weeks off following England's run to the
World Cup semi-finals, but he said: "I had the option if I wanted
to come back later I could, but I wanted to be involved.
"I left Manchester City at the end of last season in a good place
and I wanted to pick up where we left off. I'm not resting on
this. It is a short career. I want to win as much as I can win."
Guardiola doesn't expect City to beat their points record this
season, but with a first Champions League crown also in their
sights, the Spaniard is determined to keep driving his players
towards greater heights.
"People say, 'Can you improve on 100 points'' - I say no. We are
not here to do that," Guardiola said.
"But individually the players can improve. Of course we can
improve. If I felt we could not improve the team I would call my
chairman and say, 'OK, I leave'.
"We believe we can do better, dominate more and we will try to do
it. Is it going to happen? I don't know but we believe we can do