Manchester City will go in to the second leg of their Champions League tie with Monaco boosted by the knowledge they’ve booked their place in the FA Cup semi-final, according to Nicolas Otamendi.
The Argentine defender played the full 90 minutes in the 2-0 win over Middlesbrough at the weekend and believes the confidence they’ve gained from that result will be invaluable at the Stade Louis II.
It was a comfortable victory at the Riverside Stadium, with the Blues looking composed in defence and creating a hatful of chances that on another day, may have yielded a much greater winning margin.
The manner of that performance, allied with the fact both players and fans alike now have a Wembley appearance to look forward to, sees Otamendi head into Wednesday’s finely balanced last 16 tie full of confidence.
“It’s always good to go to the next match with a positive result, because that boosts our confidence,” the defender explained.
“It (Middlesbrough) was a good game from our side, we created many chances. The result could have been wider than it was but we kept our defensive order and attacked really well.
“Now we focus on the match on Wednesday. It’s important we go there and win.”
It’s therefore no surprise to hear Otamendi comment on his admiration for a side skippered by former Porto team-mate Radamel Falcao.
Alongside John Stones in the heart of the Blues defence, the 29-year-old experienced first-hand how clinical the free-flowing Principality side can be at the Etihad Stadium.
There were lessons to be learned from that night and though City dug deep to secure an all-important and memorable win, Nico admits he and his team-mates do not see their two goal lead as a reason to rest on their laurels.
“We’re aware Monaco are a really great team," he added.
“They have very important players. You can’t give them a single chance because they are very good.
“We need to correct some defensive mistakes but our aim is to go there and win. We’ll think of it as if it’s 0-0 and will go there to win.”