Men's Team

Pep: Sitting back will kill us

PEP: We have to attack - or face elimination
Manchester City must attack Monaco in Wednesday’s Champions League last-16 game if they stand any chance of progressing.

That’s the view of manager Pep Guardiola who believes defending the two-goal advantage they established in the first leg would “kill” his side’s hopes of progressing to the quarter-finals of the competition.

City won a thrilling first encounter 5-3 after a remarkable last 20 minutes saw them score three times to turn the tie in their favour – but the Catalan boss, famed for his commitment to attacking football, has ruled out the idea his side will sit back and protect their lead, despite the threat posed by Europe’s most lethal attack.

“When one team score 123 goals it’s because they can score many different ways,” Guardiola said of Monaco’s attacking prowess. “The best way [to defend] is score goals, attack as much as possible.

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

“We scored five goals when it’s not easy to score against them. What you have to do is go to score goals.”

Guardiola’s has a remarkable record as a manager in the Champions League.

He twice won the trophy when in charge of Barcelona and has reached at least the semi-final stage in his last seven attempts.

A positive result would see him on the way to making it eight in a row – but he says he isn’t thinking about personal records.

“Believe me I am not thinking about being seven times in a row the semi-finals,” he said. “No, I am here to help the club reach the next round.

“The best way to defend the result is attack well, as much as possible. I don’t know another way.

“Monaco win a lot of games because they attack well and when that happens football is amazing.

“I have done it all my career that way. We have to control, of course.

“I am not here for me I am here for a group of people to do it better. I am so satisfied with my own personal success and it is enough.

“I want to help a new club be stable in Europe and after we see what level.

“What I want is tomorrow make a good game, I want to be in the quarter-finals, it would be a dream for me. We will see.”

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