The global break now arrives for Liverpool following a run of seven fixtures in 23 days that included encounters with City, Paris Saint-Germain, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Napoli.
Last season, City conceded seven goals in two games against Liverpool at Anfield in the league and Champions League; something had to change and there was a distinct difference to the way his team approached this fixture.
Guardiola, who had substituted regular penalty taker Sergio Aguero, was adamant that Mahrez should be given the responsibility but he ended up clasping his hands in his head after the shot from 12 yards missed the top corner by yards.
Club record signing Mahrez has now missed six of his last 10 penalties in the Premier League but says he needs to put the disappointment behind him as quickly as possible.
Sterling, 23, has been booed during each game at Liverpool since his acrimonious move to City in 2015. They now sit level at the top of table, with Chelsea, on 20 points after eight games of the season. They've started the season well.
The Welshman also provided a delightful chipped pass for Aubameyang to run to for Arsenal's fifth goal, underlining what a big loss he will be if, as expected, he leaves at the end of the season.
"In training he shoots ideal penalties but sometimes it happens", Guardiola said post-match. We have to start thinking about the players. It's still early in the season, but City will likely feel this was dropped points against a key Premier League rival.
"Not struggling in the sense of playing badly but I felt as though Liverpool just had the edge on them when I was watching". "The start of the game was fantastic".
That's led to plenty of speculation about problems in the side, with this scoreless display making it four games without a goal for one of their famed attacking trident since all three have been at Anfield.
"So there's nothing better than playing these type of games".
"When I was up there doing commentary, I could see the goalkeeping coach John Achterberg", Carragher said.
"I really like the work they do, but on the other side if you play against a team of their quality, the win is even sweeter", he said.