Manchester City secured the win at the Etihad Stadium over Borussia Mönchengladbach on March 17th, 2021, in the round of 16 second-leg. During the game, City scored two goals courtesy of Kevin De Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan in the twelfth and eighteenth minutes of the game, respectively. However, Pep Guardiola expressed doubts about his side’s further progression in the competition.
Manchester City faced Gladbach over two legs and recorded a four-nil victory against them in aggregate. On the first leg, Gabriel Jesus and Bernardo Silva scored for the Manchester club. The goals granted them an away goal advantage going into the second leg of the contest.
BUDAPEST, HUNGARY – MARCH 16: Florian Neuhaus of Borussia Mönchengladbach in action during the UEFA Champions League Round Of 16 Leg Two match between Manchester City and Borussia Mönchengladbach at Puskas Arena on March 16, 2021, in Budapest, Hungary. Sporting stadiums around Germany remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Christian Verheyen/Borussia Mönchengladbach via Getty Images)Following the win, Manchester City players received a word of caution against celebrating too much. Their manager truly believes that the season needs to be seen out in a powerful way. To do that, Guardiola feels that Man City cannot lose focus.
In an interview on March 17th, 2021, he said, “We are edging close to a Champions League title. But, some circumstances can contradict our entire season. The fight for the Premier League title keeps the hunger for the UCL title alive. Due to our winning ways, we are holding on strong, but you never know what will happen next.”
🗣 "First year I arrived here 5 years ago, they told me that I have to win the Champions League, It's always on our shoulders."
Pep Guardiola talks about the pressure on Manchester City to win the Champions League pic.twitter.com/lZJxhQbOk4
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) March 17, 2021
The Citizens path in the Champions League this season
Manchester City had a comfortable run in the UCL this season despite being in a tough group consisting of teams like Olympiakos, Marseille, and FC Porto. They recorded five wins and one draw with no losses, and thus smoothly entered the knockout stages.
Their opponents in the knockout rounds, Gladbach, were supposed to be giant killers. They caused a big upset at the start of this season in the Bundesliga with wins over Bayern Munich (3-2) and Borussia Dortmund (4-2). They beat them in such a dominating fashion that makes City a scary team to face-off with.
Manchester City has never once gone past the Champions League Semi-Final. In the nine years that they have appeared in the European competition, Manchester City has remained lackluster at best.
Manchester City faces a tough battle with Everton for a shot at winning the double this season
Manchester City faces an indecisive battle with Everton on March 20th, 2021, in the FA Cup Quarter-Finals. The Citizens have not met the Merseyside Blue’s in the FA Cup since March 11th, 1981.
However, City has an outstanding record over their Premier League compatriots following Carlo Ancelotti’s arrival at Goodison Park. Man City has recorded two wins in the previous two meetings with the Toffees. They will hope to extend their record to three at Goodison Park.
Nevertheless, it would not be wise to underestimate Everton. In this season, star forwards Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison had provided the decisive goal in favor of the Toffees when needed.
Pep will use his vast array of tactics to off-set the Englishman-Brazilian duo. They can do this by scoring the goals necessary to assert their dominance in the cup game as they have done in the EPL.
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