Champions League: Manchester City

Champions League Manchester City

It’s time for a Champions League reunion between Manchester City and Real Madrid. Two European big names with title ambitions, who meet again for a clash whose winner has ended up crowned in the last two seasons.

3 mins

Manchester City against Real Madrid, fifteen Champions Leagues combined in a single quarter-final. The last two clubs to have brandished the Grail on the European scene as well. Tuesday April 9 will be the fifth time that these behemoths from the Old Continent have met since 2012 on the star track. “ I have no other choice. It feels like a bit of a tradition — playing three years in a row against the king of the competition », smiled the Catalan Pep Guardiola at the time of the draw, realizing that after 2022 and 2023, he was going to rub shoulders with the White House again.

The Spanish technician has something to smile about, in fact. Because in the last two seasons, when City and Real faced each other, the match resulted in the European champion. In 2022, Karim Benzema, Vinicius and Rodrygo, author of a double in the last minutes of the return match, allowed the Madrid club to reach the final. And this, at the end of a very poorly embarked scenario in a match where they were dominated, which had become a specialty of the house. But the following season, success left Ancelotti’s men, while Guardiola’s men delivered a perfect copy to win 4-0 in the return match before winning the trophy.

It’s gasoline for me

“We played without courage, without personality – courage and personality are fundamental in this type of match, and we did not have any in the second leg,” recalled Carlo Ancelotti at a press conference, visibly still marked by the slap. But this year, the dynamics are very different. Real Madrid are flying over La Liga, while Manchester City are still battling with Arsenal and Liverpool and displaying a less dominant game than a year ago.

Ancelotti assured him, “ As for courage and personality, we had time to prepare for this match, we prepared very well, and I am convinced that we will give our best “. It must be said that the presence of Jude Bellingham, already sparkling at the highest level at 20, helps a lot. And the more regular performances of Frenchman Aurélien Tchouaméni in the midfield too. When on the other side, Kévin De Bruyne is just returning to form and Erling Haaland is no longer as dominant in the opposing area.

Defeat is pain and victory is relief, not happiness…suffering and stress keep you alive, that’s fuel to me “, commented Carlo Ancelotti, who lives for this kind of match. Let’s hope for him that this does not turn into a heavy defeat, so as not to tip the scales towards his little death at the head of Real, whose leaders have a tendency towards impatience.