Sunday, May 28, 2023

Guardiola: “We may play worse than in the first leg and win”

Manchester City Y real Madrid dispute their second consecutive final. Last year they went down different paths (Madrid fell to Chelsea and City eliminated PSG) and this time they meet again with the always morbid presence of Pep Guardiola on the visiting bench, who has been asked repeatedly, at the press conference, if the team would make the champion’s corridor to Madrid. “It is something that concerns UEFA,” he repeated, of something that is well known and that the European protocol has never contemplated, not without first clarifying that the white club and Carlo Ancelotti had been congratulated for the conquest.

Guardiola awaits with the same prudence as always the visit to the Bernabéu despite being a stadium he has visited nine times and only lost once (with Bayern, in the 2013-14 semi-final). With City (19-20 round of 16) he won 1-2 and with Barça he won five times and drew twice. The victory of the first leg by 4-3 keeps him in suspense. “To eliminate Madrid you have to play two good games, not just one,” he stressed.

The first fell on his part, with a tighter score according to the superiority expressed by City. Guardiola did not want to expand on the analysis of something past, which has no remedy, nor delve much into the future until the clash begins. “We may play worse than in the first leg and win“, He stated about how “unpredictable” football is and how the merits of the game are transferred to the scoreboard, not always in a proportionate way.

The 0-4 does not serve as a reference

Guardiola will not take Barça’s 0-4 as a reference at the Bernabéu because Xavi has players other than his. Being that a powerful reason, the most, is not the only one. “The truth is that I did not see the game, only the highlights [el resumen de las jugadas más destacadas]but I know that that day Benzema did not play and that Ancelotti did something that he normally doesn’t do,” he said, alluding to Modric’s position as midfielder.

The Santpedor coach faces the third of his ten Champions League semi-finals against Madrid. He eliminated him with Barça and fell with Bayern. Experience is a helpful factorwithout being decisive. In contrast to the trajectory of him, City and the vast majority of their players, they only play the second final in their history.

“The question is what if you have learned from the experience and what have you learned”, pondered Guardiola, pragmatically, without sharing what lessons he had drawn from his innumerable visits. He is convinced of something: the idea of ​​the game must be maintained and the team must appeal to his personality, without being intimidated by the setting or the circumstances. A hellish reception awaits City.

“Each game is different, you can’t compare it. We’ll see tomorrow how each player gets up, how they feel… Many things happen in a game where experience can’t help”, he commented. For example, knowing if Kyle Walker will be ready to play. A vital piece in defense, with John Stones injured and Joao Cancelo suspended.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest article