Manchester City came away from Real Madrid’s stadium with a 1-1 draw, which can perhaps be considered lucky as the Citizens’ goal should not have stood. How did Pep Guardiola assess the match?
These are old friends who meet in the Champions League for the third time in the last four editions. First, the Citizens knocked out Real Madrid in the eighth round, the Spanish side came back to haunt the English in the semi-finals last year.
The two teams know each other so well and one could expect a tactical chess match where neither team will want to make a mistake. Carlo Ancelotti has thus set the team a tactic that suits him.
Real waited in a deep block, trying to stretch the opponent as close as possible and then strike from quick counter attacks, which is what he has the players built for. Vinícius, Rodrygo, Valverde, Camavinga or Benzema are masters at this.
And that’s what they’ve done. Real were pushed into their own half in the first half, the Citizens were much more on the ball, only then Camavinga got hold of the ball, collided with Modric, dragged the ball into the attacking half where he passed it to Vinícius before the whitewash and he scored beautifully.
“We started really well and we were the better team. But then they made an amazing break thanks to Camavingo and Vinícius finished fantastically. And then, when they were the better team in the second half, we scored,” Guardiola soberly assessed the match in his press conference.
Real’s stoppers David Alaba and especially Antonio Rüdiger kept a close eye on Erling Haaland. The Norwegian footballer was not seen much in the match, he did not like the German defender’s personal defending.
“Alaba and Rüdiger were very close to Haaland. We have to see if we can attack a bit better. In addition, Valverde and Kroos were guarding the space in front of them, so it wasn’t easy to find spaces for Erling. In the second game we will try to get him more in rhythm,” Guardiola said of his attacking star.
Source: Manchester City
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