no1badge
Manchester City's best form of defence will be to attack in Monaco on Wednesday as they seek to reach the Champions League quarter-finals, manager Pep Guardiola said.

City edged an astonishing last 16, first leg 5-3 at the Etihad Stadium, having trailed 2-1 and 3-2, and will approach the second leg in a similarly attacking fashion.

"The best way (to defend) is score goals, attack as much as possible," Guardiola told reporters in Monaco on Tuesday.

"When one team scores that many goals and you think about just defending, you kill yourself. The idea is to attack."

Monaco have been a formidable attacking unit this season, scoring 84 goals in 29 Ligue 1 games, and carved City open in the first leg before capitulating late on.

Monaco's Colombia striker Radamel Falcao scored twice in Manchester but there are doubts about his fitness ahead of the return after he suffered a hip injury at the weekend.

"Falcao feels better but I do not know if he is fit to start. We'll see tomorrow," Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim said.

Whether he plays will not effect Guardiola's thinking though. "Monaco win a lot of games because they attack well and when that happens football is amazing," he said.

After several disappointments, City made their first major impact in the Champions League last season, reaching the semi-finals under Guardiola's predecessor Manuel Pellegrini.

With Guardiola's track record in the competition, however, the Premier League club want to take the next step.

"I am not here for me I am here for a group of people to do it better. I want to help a new club be stable in Europe," the Spaniard said. "What I want is tomorrow make a good game, I want to be in the quarter-finals, it would be a dream for me."

City defender Bacary Sagna knows he will be in for a busy night on the French Riviera.

"As a defender, it is never pleasing to concede goals. I was upset after the first leg that we conceded three goals. I cannot be happy with that," the former Arsenal player said.

"It shows the spirit of Monaco. They create a lot of chances to score goals and they have a lot of quality. They are a strong team but we have already shown we have a lot of quality too."

Dybala: I want Barcelona

After Juventus booked a safe passage into the quarter-finals of the Champions League, Paulo Dybala left no one in any doubt as to who he wanted in the latter stages.

It was the marksman's penalty that won the second leg of Juve's Round of 16 tie against Porto, meaning the Bianconeri can now face another of Europe's big boys.

"Who do I want? Barcelona," was Dybala's response to Premium Sports after the game.

"I am happy with the win and to get to the next round but now all of the games are difficult.

"We'll see who will face in the draw but the team is playing well."

Sampaoli: Sevilla were worse than their rival

Despite the Champions League elimination of his Sevilla side, Jorge Sampaoli valued the effort of his team who had to play with a man less after Samir Nasri was sent off, but conceded the best team won.

The pressure also got to the coach who was himself sent to the stands later in the game.

"The team made a huge effort but their goalkeeper was very important," Sampaoli said after the match.

"He stopped two penalties and gave Leicester the advantage.

"We were on top in the second half and generated some good situations but it became very difficult."

Sevilla were unable to score an away goal which would've taken the tie to extra time, and he pondered the advantage that Jamie Vardy's first-leg strike had given the Foxes.

"In the first leg, the advantage needed to be bigger," he continued.

"These two-legged ties are resolved by minute details and we were worse than our rival."

Though being out of European football for the first time in years is very much a reality for the Andalusians, Sampaoli could've done with it being just a fantasy.

"I see myself sat in bed wishing that I was in a dream," he concluded.

Mourinho-Conte rivalry under more scrutiny

It may be one of the shortest coaching rivalries, but Antonio Conte's spat with Jose Mourinho is certainly proving to be one of the most ferocious in world football following another bust-up in the FA Cup.

The Portuguese tactician was forced to endure yet another frustrating return to Stamford Bridge after a stunning strike by N'Golo Kante shortly following the restart sealed a 1-0 FA Cup quarter-final victory for the hosts.

The match, though, will be remembered more for the action in the technical area than that on the pitch, after a challenge from Antonio Valencia on Marcos Alonso in the first-half sparked the furor of the Italian coach who was subsequently seen hurling criticism at his opposite number.

At one stage, the two coaches were forced to be separated by the fourth official after Conte complained of their heavy-handed tactics.

The rivalry comes after Mourinho was critical of Conte's celebrations following Chelsea's 4-0 win over Manchester United in the Premier League back in October, calling it exaggerated and out of place.

To add fuel to the fire, Mourinho was seen snubbing Conte for a handshake at the end of the encounter.

Costa: I wouldn't blame Hazard if he joined Real Madrid, he's f****** amazing

In the aftermath of a 1-0 FA Cup win over Jose Mourinho's Manchester United, Chelsea striker Diego Costa has admitted that it'd be hard for teammates Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois to turn down an offer from a club of Real Madrid's stature.

With James Rodriguez and Isco long rumoured to be on their way out, and Keylor Navas not helping his cause with a worryingly sub-par season, it wouldn't be a surprise if Los Blancos came knocking to pick up some of Chelsea's biggest stars.

"I wouldn't blame Hazard if he joined Real Madrid," Costa told Onda Cero. "He's f****** amazing.

"Barcelona or Real Madrid are going to watch him at any time. Hazard is happy here but when a team like this knocks at the door you have to think about it.

"He's a world-class player. It is normal that the Chelsea fans love him and hopefully he will not leave."

Courtois too could be summoned in goal due to Navas' form this campaign.

"We already know that Thibaut [Courtois] likes Spain very much, his family lives there," Costa concluded.

Simeone: The tie could be dangerous...not only because of what happened in Barcelona

In his press conference prior to Wednesday's game against Bayer Leverkusen, Diego Simeone warned of the perils of his Atletico Madrid side approaching the game with complacency.

The coach made it clear that he expects his players to show the right mentality despite being 4-2 up from the first leg.

"We must always play the games in the same way," he began.

"I don't care about the competition, I only value the shirt that we have and that we always play with the same intention.

"Though we won in Germany, there were complicated moments during the 90 minutes and cup ties are dangerous, not only because of what happened in Barcelona.

"We have to take the match where we want it to go."

Despite the two-goal cushion, Simeone didn't appear to be too relaxed.

"I'm worried about everything," he continued.

"A football game has many changing situations and you have to be prepared to solve them all.

"This game won't vary from others, I always have to have my wits about me."

Should Atleti go out, it would be their last cup tie to be played at the Estadio Vicente Calderon, but the coach wants the locals to be at their intimidating best.

"I expect a full stadium to participate on Wednesday," he said.

"That will help to give us the possibility of being among the top eight in Europe."

Kevin Gamiro won't play against Leverkusen and Simeone was asked who the starting XI was likely to be.

"I'm valuing the characteristics of our players and looking for the best alternatives to do harm," he noted.

"On Tuesday we trained so that on Wednesday I will know who to choose to play."
 Προβολές : 324
- 3067 προηγούμενη ημέρα

Trades (Pre game)

Dropping odds