Champions League day 5
Manchester City and Manchester United got what they needed to secure a spot onto the knockout phase of the Champions League. Both Northern England clubs scored late and had to suffer to overcome a good opposition.
Lyon 2-2 Manchester City
Lyon took four points of Manchester City this year, including an impressive win for the group opener 2-1 in Manchester. The French side scored 4 goals and opened Man City’s defense like no other English teams has done so far this year. Yet the French team is not qualified and will need a point at Shakthar to see the next round.
Coach Guardiola, Man City, on the result:
“We are into the last 16. It’s so important at this time to be in the last 16. When you play against Lyon, it’s complicated because of how good they are. The level was quite similar across all the group that’s why starting with a 2-1 defeat at home to Lyon, we have made an excellent recovery in the past four games.
Always you think ‘how will we react in that situation?’ [going behind] and always we have shown a huge personality. People say the French league is just PSG, PSG – people all the time say that, but people are so wrong.
Always in my career when I play against French teams always, they are so physical. That’s why they are World Cup winners.
All of them are so strong; they’re fast and it is so complicated. That’s why I give a lot of credit on our performance today.”
Man United had to wait the minutes of regular to beat Young Boys 1-0.
The Swiss side had perfectly locked the game giving Manchester a few chances to score. Yet with the win, Jose Mourinho’s men are qualified. His reaction was epic:
“For some of my lovers I just want to say for the ones that like stats: 14 seasons in the Champions League, 14 times qualified through the group phase. Never one of my teams stay behind in the group phase. The season I didn’t play Champions League, I won the Europa League.”
“We have qualified, that’s good. It was a very difficult group and to qualify with one match to go is obviously good. The performance had lots of good things but also lots of disappointed things. We lost too many chances, crucial chances in crucial moments of the game.
When you start the game and don’t score immediately, that feeling comes. We are not a team that is scoring a lot of goals. We feel that. In the Champions League we have qualified with one goal scored at home.
It is a negative record. But it is fantastic that we have qualified from such a difficult group. So I think the boys feel it on their shoulders, but I have very tired players and that is what I like. It means that they gave everything and their effort was big.”