Already on Tuesday night we will see a duel between two giants. Real Madrid will host Manchester City in the Champions League semi-finals. This is a repeat of last year’s semi-final. Wayne Rooney, however, believes that this year will be very different.
Manchester City have been one of the best teams on the planet for several years now. Pep Guardiola has made his charges an almost unstoppable machine that rolls the English Premier League in particular. However, he is still waiting for success in the Champions League and this year he intends to change that.
But in the semi-finals he now faces the same opponent as last year. Last season, Real Madrid, thanks to their character and winning nature, managed to win the whole double-header.
The Citizens won 4: 3 at home, but lost 3: 1 at the Santiago Bernabeu due to two late goals and one goal in extra time.
Manchester City were better in both games, but the main role was played by the efficiency and the aforementioned nature of Real Madrid. Can this happen again this year? Wayne Rooney says no.
“Manchester City can not only beat Real Madrid, they can downright destroy them. I could certainly be wrong, but I think the Citizens are on another level. You can never write off a team with the experience and history of Real Madrid, but I wouldn’t bet on them,” he writes in his column for The Times.
Rooney has felt since the start of the season that this is the year Guardiola will finally conquer Europe for the first time in a long time and for the first time with Manchester City. And the key factor? None other than Erling Haaland.
“City are better defensively, they are a more patient team, but the main change from last year is Haaland. What happened last year would not have happened with Haaland. City paid the price for not having any real threat on counter attacks,” the England legend added.
Haaland has been scoring goal after goal this season. He has already broken the record for most goals in the Premier League and is also the top scorer in the Champions League with 12 goals. In total, he has already netted a fantastic 51 goals in a Citizens jersey this season.
Source: The Times, Marca
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