Saturday 21 September 2019

Guardiola urges reluctant fans to turn Etihad in to cauldron

Pep Guardiola wants the City supporters to play their part as City bid to overcome a 1-0 first-leg deficit. Photo: Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff
Pep Guardiola wants the City supporters to play their part as City bid to overcome a 1-0 first-leg deficit. Photo: Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff

Luke Edwards

Pep Guardiola challenged Manchester City's supporters to prove to him they want to win the Champions League as he questioned their appetite for European football's elite competition.

Guardiola's comments came as it emerged that City were still trying to sell tickets for the second leg of their quarter-final against Tottenham Hotspur.

Guardiola has often squirmed when asked whether City are good enough to win the Champions League and he looked and sounded uncomfortable when challenged on the subject yesterday.

He argued that it was now up to the supporters, as well as the players, to prove they wanted the club to reach the semi-finals.

Atmosphere

"I want an atmosphere like the Liverpool game (in the Premier League)," Guardiola said.

"That would be enough for me, maybe a little bit better. We need it. Do it for the guys. They will have bad moments and that's when we need our supporters.

"At this stage, without supporters we cannot go through. I'm really curious to see how our fans are going to react. I want to see that they want to get to the semi-finals; not just the players, the fans too."

Guardiola knows the success of City's season will be defined by their next three fixtures - against Tottenham, in Europe and the Premier League, followed by the Manchester derby at Old Trafford.

"I know I have to win the Champions League - the chairman told me I have to win three times in a row," Guardiola said, sarcastically, when asked if he felt under more pressure to win the Champions League because of the expectations from above. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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