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Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Pep Guardiola says Premier League title would trump Champions League glory

Pep Guardiola says winning the Champions League would pale in comparison to another Premier League title with Manchester City.
City host Tottenham in the second leg of the Champions League quarter-finals on Wednesday night, looking to overturn a 1-0 defeat and progress to the last four.
Guardiola was unable to claim a Champions League title at Bayern Munich and last won it eight years ago after guiding Barcelona to their second triumph in three seasons.
"I know people say I came here to win the Champions League, but I didn't come here to win the Champions League, honestly," Guardiola said on the eve of their second leg against Spurs.
"I came here to play the way my team has been playing in the last 20 months. That is why I came here - to play the way I want to play and of course I want to win the Champions League.
"I was at a big club in Bayern Munich and after three seasons I won absolutely everything except the Champions League. It was a big failure. What can I say, I accept that, I know that. I have to live with that but it is not a big, big problem.
"It pushes me better when you feel you have to win it. If not, it is not enough but also at the same time you have to accept the other teams were better in this competition.
"A lot of big clubs are not here now in these stages, so what is important is how you handle things for 11 months.
"That is why I have said many times the Premier League, for me, is the most important title, showing every three days that you are there. Being there every time sends out a good message.
"What we need to do tomorrow is put our hurt on the pitch, our desire and after we will see."
The Etihad Stadium is not famed for its atmosphere, and Guardiola threw down the gauntlet to his own supporters, challenging them to show him how badly they want to reach the last four.
He added: "I'm sorry guys, I'm a failure in this competition but I arrived in the quarter-finals and the semi-finals many times and every time I played away the atmosphere was really incredible.
"We need it. We really need it. I want to see if they [the supporters] want to get to the semi-final, not just the players.
"The players I don't doubt after 20 months. I want to see if our fans really want to get to the semi-finals. I want to see tomorrow."