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"A team that believes" - Can anyone stop Man City 'juggernant'?

"A team that believes" - Can anyone stop Man City 'juggernant'?


"A team that believes" - Can anyone stop Man City 'juggernant'?



When you look at Manchester City's form in Europe and domestically, manager Pep Guardiola's words should be a surprise to no-one.



The Champions League holders swept aside Copenhagen 6-2 on aggregate to reach the quarter-finals for the seventh successive season and become the first English club to win 10 consecutive matches in the competition.



They did it despite leaving seven players out from the side that beat Manchester United on Sunday, with half an eye on this weekend's showdown with Liverpool at Anfield - as City bid to become the first side to win four English top-flight titles in a row.



And, as City remain with the chance of a historic double Treble, former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand described them as a "juggernaut that needs to be stopped".



The ease with which City booked their last-eight spot alongside Bayern Munich, Paris St-Germain and Real Madrid suggests no-one will relish a two-legged encounter with the holders when the draw is made on 15 March.



And Guardiola feels it underlines a change of mindset at City since he arrived at the club in 2016.



"We arrived here from Barcelona and Bayern Munich, where the demand is to always be there," he said. "I felt the club - not the players - didn't feel it.



"Managers and hierarchies don't get time, but they gave us time to lose against Monaco [2017], against Liverpool [2018], against Tottenham [2019].



"It is easy for clubs that have big history - start with the best ones: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool, Bayern Munich or Manchester United, they have been used to it.



"Coming here, it was not about one person from Catalonia saying 'now we are going to win the Champions League'. They gave me time.



"Now we are a process where we can lose, definitely, but we can compete everywhere because we come from a final, a semi-final, a final and now the quarter-finals again. That means consistency."



Guardiola insisted his much-changed line-up came from his desire to get more energy into his team after their exertions against Manchester United. But none of the outfield players that started that match completed the full 90 minutes in this one.



Twice he was asked directly about Liverpool - who are a point ahead of Manchester City - and on both occasions he told his inquisitor to "ask me on Friday", meaning his pre-match media conference.



"It is not personal," he said. "I want to see you at my press conference on Friday. If I answer all the questions now, you will not come."



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