Southampton's fearless resistance wasn't broken until 70 minutes were on the clock, Sergio Aguero applying a lovely finish to Kyle Walker' drilled cross, with Walker turning finisher with three minutes to go to wrap up the points.
Manchester City defender Kyle Walker admits sticking to the game plan was the deciding factor as the champions came from behind to beat Southampton 2-1 at the Etihad. "When they win so many games in the last minute, it is because of special character". "We just had to be patient, putting in crosses and trying to win the second balls, but at the same time we were constantly attacking and were very aggressive in our actions".
With his team finally ahead, City boss Guardiola vented at what he felt were time-wasting ploys from the Southampton bench when their team had been leading.
City put Southampton under a lot of pressure, but the visitors showed more composure at the back than they have done recently.
City monopolised possession in the remainder of the half but despite some slick passing moves they found Southampton's defence hard to break down.
Leroy Sane's absence through injury is evident and the German is exactly the player that City need back if they're going to challenge Liverpool for the title. At the minute, Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva & Co. have been tasked with sitting narrow and thus not being able to thread the ball through against a deep defensive line.
City rallied and pushed and probed at the Saints box with regularity, yet their every attempt to create an opening was pushed back. "We played incredible from the first minute until the end".
"Show some pride, and I think we did that".
Manager Ralph Hasenhuttl said: "It's important for us to see we can defend in that way against such a team, but we know Everton (next week) is a completely different game".
Pep Guardiola could breath a sigh of relief after Kyle Walker's 86th minute goal saw his Manchester City side escape with a 2-1 win over Southampton on a tough afternoon at the Etihad Stadium. Want to challenge the best English Fantasy Managers? Play www.epl-fantasy.com now.