Friday 30 September 2016

Roy Keane rips into "second best" Manchester City after Champions League exit

Published 05/05/2016 | 00:21

Manchester City's Fernando and Kevin De Bruyne look dejected after their Champions League exit at the hands of Real Madrid
Manchester City's Fernando and Kevin De Bruyne look dejected after their Champions League exit at the hands of Real Madrid
Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane
MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 04: Nicolas Otamendi of Manchester City looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League semi final, second leg match between Real Madrid and Manchester City FC at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 4, 2016 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images )

Roy Keane ripped into Manchester City after their limp Champions League semi-final defeat at the hands of Real Madrid, as he suggested they were outclassed by the Spanish giants.

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Gareth Bale’s deflected first half strike was the only goal in a tight tie, with City keeper Joe Hart suggesting his side were unfortunate to lose the club’s first Champions League semi-final.

Keane offered a swift rebuttal of that view of the game, with the former Manchester United skipper claiming Manuel Pellegrini’s side will already be regretting a display that saw them produce just one shot on target at the Bernabeu.

“Joe Hart said there wasn’t much between them, but maybe I was watching a different game,” said Keane.

“Madrid were by far the better team and had the better of the chances. There is no argument, they deserved to go through.

“City will be disappointed, but give credit to Madrid as I though they controlled both games. The only surprise was they only got one goal.”

Keane went on to express a view that City need to change their mentality if they are to become a force in the Champions League, as he argued they were a club that seemed happy just to reach their first semi-final in Europe’s elite competition.

“If you remember after the last round against PSG, the manager and the players were talking about how they created history. Maybe after that they thought they had gone as far as they can,” he added.

“They will learn from this. They have made progress in the last few years getting to the semi-finals, but the next big step is getting to a final and over the two legs, they were well short.

“They needed their big players to step up and perform and they never turned up.”

Meanwhile, Keane’s former United team-mate Rio Ferdinand was equally critical of City’s performance, as he suggested they didn’t give enough to push Real Madrid over the course of the two ties.

“You’ve got to go out all guns blazing. City can’t say they’ve done that tonight," Ferdinand told BT Sport. “They’ll wake up tomorrow disappointed by what’s happened.

"They didn't do enough. They didn't create enough opportunities. They didn't show desire or belief. They didn't deserve to go through.

"Real Madrid showed their experience. They were the more determined, more hungry team. With players like Bale and Ronaldo, they can grasp the occasion. For Manchester City's players, this occasion passed them by."

Ferdinand went on to suggest City have taken steps back under Pellegrini’s three-year reign as manager, as he suggested incoming boss Pep Guardiola has a huge job on his hands to get the club back to winning ways.

“Since Pellegrini has gone to Manchester City, they have gone backwards,” he added. “They were a much more impressive team, a solid unit, with lots of cohesion. They also played some industrious attacking football. They are not doing that any more.

“Pep Guardiola has a huge job on his hands coming in here. This is not going to be as good as the team he took over at Bayern. This is going to be an entirely different proposition.”

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