Erik ten Hag does not yet believe Manchester United can threaten Manchester City, even if Pep Guardiola warned of the Red Devils "coming back".
Speaking ahead of the weekend's Premier League action, Guardiola highlighted United and Newcastle United as challengers to City.
"I have the feeling United are coming back," Guardiola said. "Finally United is coming back. I've seen it against Chelsea, the first half. I like what I see of United right now."
United beat West Ham 1-0 on Sunday to climb to fifth, a point behind fourth-placed Newcastle but still six shy of City and eight off leaders Arsenal.
While United manager Ten Hag is pleased with his side's progress, he could not agree with Guardiola's assessment after that match.
"I think it's a little bit too quick to see," Ten Hag told Sky Sports. "Second half, I have to be critical.
"I also said to the players we have to think better, but the spirit we have is fabulous, and I also think we have the qualities to score goals.
"We have attacking football, we have to improve that, but if we keep going, I think we are in the right direction.
"To be a threat to them [City]? We have a long way to go."