Saturday's evidence at St James' Park, where Kevin De Bruyne and Jonjo Shelvey exchanged second-half howitzers meant City twice conceded leads in a damaging 2-2 draw, suggested version 2.0 of Guardiola's Mancunian machine might need to be hurried through the developmental phase.
Shelvey's equaliser presents Liverpool with a superb opportunity, with the Reds potentially being 11 points clear this evening. "We will see what happens this season and next season".
'I'm open, yes. I'm so comfortable working with this club, ' said Guardiola. "We have to win games, win games, win games, and when you don't win, it will be more hard".
The writing looked to be on the wall when Raheem Sterling fired the visitors into a 22nd-minute lead with his 15th goal of the season, but Jetro Willems cancelled out his strike within three minutes after exchanging passes with Miguel Almiron.
De Bruyne was the one constant threat for City and looked to have won the game when he chested down a looping clearance before smashing the ball in off the underside of the bar.
Christian Atsu squared the resulting free kick to the edge of the box where Shelvey curled a brilliant effort beyond Ederson and cause wild celebration amongst the home fans.
They head into the game on the back of their 2-1 win over Chelsea FC at The Etihad last weekend - and England legend Owen is backing the Citizens to claim all three points when they travel to face the Magpies this weekend.
"We played at a good level, in all terms".
"Unfortunately, we could not score [enough to win]".
Opposite number Steve Bruce was delighted with the resilience of his team, which had lost tamely at Aston Villa on Monday evening, and in particular with Shelvey's contribution.
"He's responded to what we want to do, and we all know he's got that ability in his locker".
They were uncharacteristically passive in possession, and a wayward De Bruyne strike from distance was all they could muster in the early stages. I'll let you decide.
"When De Bruyne hits that wonder goal, you're thinking it is typical, that is the quality they've got".
"We needed to bounce back after Monday night, it was very disappointing".
Some fair comments from him and as for where it went wrong for his old club, Brown said: 'They (Man City) were too laboured, they did not move it quick enough and that's why they were punished today'.