Stoke manager Paul Lambert was keen to take positives from a game in which his side could have lost more heavily were it not for some resolute defending.
"We want to be [Premier League] champions. but, believe me, before and after United we have [the Champions League] quarter-finals and at that moment it is the most important thing, focusing on the quarter-finals", Guardiola said.
Spanish forward Jese Rodriguez is ready to step up and deliver for Stoke City as the relegation-threatened side enters the crucial stage of the season.
A competent display secured a comfortable 2-0 win at Stoke's expense before Manchester City jetted off to Abu Dhabi for some warm weather training.
"Everybody in the blue side of Manchester knows it's a once in a lifetime opportunity [to win the title against United], but steady, it won't be handed to us".
19 more strikes from now until the season's completion will see City hold the record for the most goals scored in a Premier League season.
City left for the airport after the Stoke game with a break in the club owner's homeland awaiting them.
US Secretary Of State, Rex Tillerson Arrives Nigeria, Shortens Trip
Tillerson arrived in Nairobi on Friday as part of a five-nation tour of Africa that includes Ethiopia, Chad, Nigeria and Djibouti. Mr Tillerson was also accompanied on the visit by his Chief of Staff, Margaret Peterlin; Colonel John Walker, as well as the U.S.
Both Mateo and Silva's partner Yessica Suarez Gonzalez have remained in Spain following the birth, and Guardiola has told the mid-fielder to be with them as much as he needs to be.
And as they landed in the Middle East, Oleksandr Zinchenko revealed he had struggled to sleep on the flight as the rest of his team kept him up.
"There are always goals to pursue, statistics to overcome, and we will carry on and then work towards next season".
"Now we have three weeks off, we go to Abu Dhabi and will come back strong".
Stoke were pinned in for long periods in the first half, rarely touching the ball and chasing shadows at times, yet there was still some encouragement for the home team to take come the interval.
The duo were back in the starting line-up after injury and performed as if they'd never been away.
However, the Premier League leaders have to wait until tea time on Saturday March 31 before they are next in action, followed by United at the Etihad in their following fixture on Saturday April 7 in a match you can see live on Sky Sports Premier League.
Elsewhere, in the Champions League Manchester United will host Sevilla in the second leg of the last 16 tie at Old Trafford tonight.