Spanish coach Pep Guardiola confirmed that his Manchester City team did not perform the best against Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-final second leg.
Sharjah 24- Asaad Khalil:
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has accepted his side’s defeat after a stunning uprising that sent Real Madrid into the Champions League final as City’s hopes for another season were dashed.
The English team was leading 1-0 until substitute Rodrigo equalized for Real Madrid in the last minute and then added the second goal a minute later.
Karim Benzema completed the uprising with a penalty in overtime as Real Madrid won 3-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu and 6-5 on aggregate.
Guardiola told BT Sport: “We were close. We were close. But in the end we failed to reach the final. We didn’t play in the first half, we didn’t perform well enough, but we didn’t have problems either. After we scored the goal we were the better side, We found our rhythm, and the team played comfortably.”
“Real Madrid put a lot of players in the penalty area with Militao, Rodrygo, Vinicius and Benzema, crosses and scored two goals. We didn’t do our best, but that’s normal. In the semi-final the players feel the pressure and the desire to qualify. Football is unpredictable, it’s like this.” The match. We have to accept it.”
The Champions League title is still missing from the treasury of the English team, which won its only continental title in the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1970.
City were eliminated from the Champions League from the semi-finals against Real Madrid in 2016 and then from the quarter-finals in 2018 and 2019 against local rivals Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur, respectively.
The team was eliminated from the quarter-finals in 2020 against Olympique Lyonnais, before losing 0-1 in the final last season against Chelsea.
“We need to overcome the defeat and return with our fans in the last four games of this season,” said Guardiola, whose team leads the English Premier League by one point.
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