Unai Emery insists it is too soon to call his Aston Villa side Premier League title contenders, after a 1-0 win over Manchester City lifted them above the defending champions and into third place.
Leon Bailey's deflected strike in the 74th minute proved the winner as Villa equalled a club record with a 14th consecutive home victory.
City coach Pep Guardiola said Villa could "definitely" be among those still in the fight come the end of the season, but Emery insisted his side still have much work to do to catch up with the Manchester powerhouse, Arsenal and Liverpool.
"We are not contenders," he said.
"There are seven teams who are contenders more than us. We are going to play ... on Saturday against Arsenal and we are going to focus on it.
"If we keep progressing during the season, playing matches and winning like we are doing, maybe we can be a contender but I think we need more time.
"It is game 15. Maybe by game 30 or 32, but not yet."
The win gave Emery his first over Guardiola as a rival coach at the 14th attempt - 15 years to the day since they first came up against one another.
"I like to prepare matches against the best teams, the best players and the best coaches," Emery said.
"When you are playing in a high level the opponents are of a high level. But beating him for me is not something special."
Defeat left City winless in their last four league matches, down in fourth place and six points off leaders Arsenal.
Guardiola said the credit belonged to Villa on the night but admitted he had much to think about.
"The better team won," Guardiola said.
"Aston Villa was better than us. We struggled. It was really difficult.
"They are well organised, fast and physical players, they are able to control many aspects.
"That is the reason why they are up there. They played good football and we could not do it.
"It is my duty, it is my job to find a way to come back.
"Today is simple, the better team won, you have to accept it. In football it happens."
Australian Associated Press