Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has urged his side to ‘believe’ ahead of the second leg, as the Citizens face the mammoth task of overcoming a three-goal deficit at the Etihad stadium next week.
Guardiola’s City were trampled as Liverpool stormed to a 3-0 victory in the first leg of their Champions League quarter final tie, but the Catalan boss is still clinging on to the chance of making it to the semi finals, while remaining magnanimous in defeat.
The two-time Champions League winning boss told BT Sport,
“They had two attacks and scored two goals,” Guardiola continued. “That was tough but for the rest of the game we were so, so good. We had to score a goal but they defended more.”
“We didn’t create clear chances because they defended deep. We needed one goal but we couldn’t score it.”
Guardiola recognised that his team must accept that Liverpool have the upper hand heading into the second leg at the Etihad next Tuesday and that the players will face a tough challenge.
He said: “The clean sheet is so important for them. We are going to see how the players react. Accept the defeat, accept Liverpool being clinical and precise and we’ll see what happens next week.”
However, despite the loss, the City coach seems to still be holding on to Champions League dreams and claims with a little encouragement his side can convince themselves to believe.
He added: “We have to accept it and now we have [Manchester] United at home and then Liverpool at home. We see what happens. Of course it is difficult but we believe.”
“Nobody believes we will go through. We will convince ourselves tomorrow.”
Undoubtedly, Manchester City’s determination will be tested next week and though the result doesn’t look optimistic for them now, bigger miracles have been known to happen in the Champions League.