Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said that winning the UEFA Champions League again is an easier task than winning the first as the defending champions and treble winners from last season prepare for their first UEFA Champions League group-stage match of the new season.
Manchester City won the treble last season, lifting the Premier League and FA Cup and beating Inter Milan in the final courtesy of a second-half strike deim Rodri.
Guardiola, who joined the City in 2016, finally won the trophy in his second UEFA Champions League final with the club after losing the 2021 final to Chelsea, breaking the jinx of not winning the Champions League since leaving Barcelona.
However, the Spanish manager is not carried away by the feat, which he said the players want to replicate once again, saying the hardest part, which is winning one first, has already been achieved.
“It’ll be easier. The hardest to win is the first one. For our club to win the Champions League is incredible, but in perspective, how many won one Champions League? A lot. We haven’t done anything special with just one, but we are incredibly proud. I didn’t watch the game, not at all. I had the feeling they [Inter Milan] were a strong team. They proved it. It was a tight game, but they showed how strong they are, and they are a candidate again.” Guardiola said.
Manchester City will face Crvena Zvezda, RB Leipzig, and Young Boys in Group G of the competition, with the Serbians traveling to Etihad on matchday one on Tuesday. The treble winners defeated West Ham United 3-1 at the weekend.
Games will happen on Tuesday evening as Barcelona hosts Antwerp, Newcastle travel to AC Milan, while Lazio host Atletico Madrid, among others.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FIXTURES:
Feyenoord v Celtic.
Lazio v Atl Madrid.
AC Milan v Newcastle
PSG v B Dortmund
Young Boys v RB Leipzig
Man City v Red Star Belgrade
Barcelona v Royal Antwerp
Shakhtar Donetsk v FC Porto.
Daniel Ademiju Idowu