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Pep Guardiola admits ‘unspoken’ Champions League demand as Carlo Ancelotti reveals how Real Madrid will treat Erling Haaland

Bynewsmagzines

May 8, 2023
Pep Guardiola admits 'unspoken' Champions League demand as Carlo Ancelotti reveals how Real Madrid will treat Erling Haaland


Pep Guardiola has admitted that Manchester City bosses expect to win the Champions League under his stewardship.

It comes as his side prepare to face Real Madrid on Tuesday night, live on talkSPORT, in the first leg of their European encounter at the Bernabeu.

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City take on Real Madrid in the Champions League

The Spanish giants are the most successful team in the competition, having won it 14 times, compared to City, who have reached the final just once and never lifted the trophy.

But Guardiola has insisted that he is the man to break the club’s duck despite the unspoken pressure from above.

“I know the demand from my club to win the Champions League. I had the feeling when I arrived,” he said.

“They didn’t ask me but I know the feeling that after the first Premier League the target was the Champions League.

“It’s normal. When you don’t have one trophy you want it. It’s nice, in a good way.

“You cannot become crazy either. It’s a football game.

Guardiola has admitted his bosses want to win the Champions League

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Guardiola has admitted his bosses want to win the Champions League

“Two games to try to do a good one in a special scenario and that is what we have to do.”

City were knocked out of the Champions League last season by Real Madrid in dramatic fashion when Rodrygo scored twice in stoppage-time before going on to lose in extra time.

Los Blancos went on to win the competition and Guardiola sees himself doing the same one day at City.

“As much as we are here, one day we will get it,” the Catalan coach added.

“One day we will reach the final and win it.

“We come here to do it this season but we did this last season and it didn’t happen because Real Madrid knows exactly what you have to do in this competition.

Erling Haaland was signed to help City win the Champions League

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Erling Haaland was signed to help City win the Champions League

“As much as we play against them, the closer we will be.”

This time around, Guardiola has a not-so secret weapon in Erling Haaland, who has bagged a whopping 51 goals this term for City, while also breaking the record for most goals in a single season, with 35 in 32 appearances.

But Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has admitted he has no specific plan to deal with City’s danger forward, saying he cannot concentrate on Haaland alone.

The Italian, who has won the Champions League more times than any coach, said: “He’s very dangerous.

Ancelotti has opened up on Real’s plan, or lack of, on Tuesday night

Ancelotti has opened up on Real’s plan, or lack of, on Tuesday night

“He’s incredibly impressive when it comes to scoring goals, that’s obvious.

“Talking about Haaland means not just talking about one player, but also about a complete team that attacks and has lots of ideas…

“Our game plan isn’t just to stop Haaland, but rather to stop a team that seems unstoppable. But I think it’s possible for us. We can win.”

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