The Champions League remains a “big” for Manchester City after they reached the quarter-finals
Manchester City booked their place in the Champions League quarter-finals with a convincing win over Borussia Monchengladbach – City fans hope this will be their last year.
However, it eluded them to succeed in the Champions League, as Real Madrid lost in the 2015-16 semi-final – when Manuel Pellegrini was in charge – the closest they got.
Since Pep Guardiola replaced him the following season, City were knocked out in the Round of 16 against Monaco, followed by a quarter-final exit against Liverpool, Tottenham and Lyon.
“In the first year I got here, I was told that we have to win the Champions League,” Guardiola said.
“I don’t think about the semi-finals. I think about the good first match and the second game [in the quarter-finals]. That’s all that worries me. “
In addition to being in the Champions League quarter-finals, City are 14 points ahead of the Premier League, in the FA Cup quarter-finals, and face Tottenham in the Carabao Cup final in April, as they seek an unprecedented quadruple.
But former City striker Paul Dikoff believes the Champions League is the tournament club owners in Abu Dhabi want.
“The Champions League is the biggest,” Dickoff told BBC Radio 5 Live. Since the Angel first came 10-11 years ago, they have made no secret that it’s the Champions League they wanted.
“Pep, the Premier League is the best.”
If second-placed Manchester United – the only team to beat City in 32 games in all competitions – does not drop any points, the closest City that could win the English title will be on May 8.
“I honestly think Pep Guardiola knows Manchester City has every chance to win the three domestic championships – it’s the Champions League and that’s the most important,” said former Chelsea striker Pat Neven at 5 Live.
However, Dikoff believes that winning the Premier League, which City lost to Liverpool last season, would be very satisfactory for Guardiola.
“I know from inside the club – especially Pep Guardiola – that the Premier League is the best,” Dikov added.
“It shows that you are the most consistent team around the world, in the toughest league in the world. Over the past five years, six, seven years, it used to be the top two in the Premier League fight, and now you talk about the top six who are of high quality. The win was In the Premier League throughout a season is the top priority. “
Can city signs do that?
City have kept 26 clean sheets in all competitions this season and have only conceded one goal in eight Champions League matches, while Guardiola was able to switch his team and rest the key players.
Former City midfielder Owen Hargreaves said defensive strength could be crucial.
Speaking on BTS Sport, he said: “Al Qaeda was not as solid as the attack, and now the defense is almost as strong.
“They kept their sheets clean and will always score a goal or two. It looks like their best chance.”
“Keeping a healthy team will be important. If they keep the team going in the final stages, they have a great chance,” Dikov added.
“Going to the quarter-finals with the clubs that have history, and who know how to win it, might make it difficult for them, but if City continues to go the way it is, there is no reason why they should not win it – it.”
Guardiola, who led Barcelona to winning the Champions League twice but failed to win it in three seasons with Bayern Munich, believes that City “will judge the titles we can win.”
He added, “Everyone is fit, but everything can change in one day. If we deserve it, we will go through it, and if we don’t do that, we will get out.”
Would concluding the Premier League title early?
City need 14 points to win the Premier League, and if they had continued winning and got there on May 8th, they would have done so at least three games before.
However, if United squander points, City could be crowned champions in April, with the Champions League semi-finals scheduled for the middle of the last week of April and the first in the middle of the week in May.
“We are close but we still have matches to play. Sometimes when you win early sometimes it is not good for other competitions,” Guardiola said.
“When you fight to win one title, you have to fight to win the other. It is important not to think too much and only focus on the next title.”