‘No regrets,’ says Pep Guardiola after Manchester City’s Champions League defeat – The Independent

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‘No regrets,’ says Pep Guardiola after Manchester City’s Champions League defeat – The Independent


Pep Guardiola insisted there were no regrets after Manchester City’s bid to retain their Champions League crown ended in a heartbreaking penalty shootout defeat to Real Madrid.

The title holders were beaten 4-3 on penalties by the Spanish giants after their quarter-final ended 4-4 on aggregate – 1-1 on the night – despite a dominant performance from Guardiola’s side during the second leg at the Etihad Stadium. .

City fell behind early to a Rodrygo goal but created plenty of chances as they looked to regain control of the tie, but Kevin De Bruyne’s 76th-minute equalizer was their only reward.

City manager Guardiola said: “I would have preferred to win, but congratulations to Real Madrid, they defended so deep with incredible solidarity and we did everything.

“I have no regrets about what we did. We always try to create more chances and concede less because we believe it helps you win and we have done everything.

“We played exceptionally in all departments, and unfortunately, we couldn’t win.”

Bernardo Silva and Mateo Kovacic both missed the shootout, with the former proving to be a particularly comfortable save for Andriy Lunin.

Guardiola refused to blame the Portuguese for his failure to register.

He said: “Bernardo asked to take it, he’s a reliable player and decided to shoot that way. What a game he played. It happens.”

Guardiola also had no complaints about Real’s tactics, with the Spanish side forced to sit back and defend deep for much of the match.

“I don’t judge,” he said. “I’m not here to do that. It’s football. In this competition, this is how football is played.

City’s defeat also ended their hopes of winning a second successive treble and they must now bounce back for Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final against Chelsea at Wembley.

Guardiola said: “Now we will rest and on Friday we will travel to London to play the match.

“We will see how people react. Of course, recovery is easier winning than losing, but it’s the FA Cup semi-final and we will try to be competitive as much as possible.

Real manager Carlo Ancelotti admitted City’s strength forced them to absorb the pressure and look to win the tie on penalties.

The Italian veteran said: “We defended really well. It was a question of survival. Madrid is a club that always fights to stay in situations where there seems to be no way out – but we always find a solution.

“By the time the penalty shootout took place, we were totally convinced that we were going to qualify.

“It’s pretty much the only way to come to City and win. You work, sacrifice and earn however you can.

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