Pep Guardiola hailed City’s ‘aggression’, as the Blues stormed to an historic Champions League last 16 victory over Schalke.
The Blues hit the German outfit for seven to clinch an outstanding 10-2 aggregate triumph – the biggest ever by an English side in a Champions League knockout tie – and cruise through to Friday’s eagerly-anticipated quarter-final draw.
Guardiola admitted his side had started the game tentatively, protecting a hard-earned 3-2 lead from the first leg, but unleashed our true colours after Sergio Aguero’s opening goal from the penalty spot.
“It was a clear result,” Guardiola said. “We are happy to get to the quarter-finals.
“We didn't start that well – we were a bit scared to play – but after it went 1-0, we relaxed and decided to play and be aggressive.
“We started the first 20 minutes to not lose what we achieved in Germany. That was why we didn’t over-attack.
“It was never the intention to be aggressive against the full-backs. It was: let’s not lose the ball.
“We didn’t lose what we achieved and that’s why we didn’t know what to do after the first goal! It was an excellent pass by Bernardo and then Gundogan, and then in the mind of the players, qualification is almost done.
“We played a good level. Of course, with qualification all but secured, it was tough for them and we kept the good level.
“We have a lot of injured players – a lot of central defensive absences – so we want to continue this run and get those players back fit.
“We had just Danilo, who was incredible. He played as a holding midfielder against Chelsea and that is what I like.
“Everyone has to compete with each other to play and they all want to play. Everybody tried to play, be bold and keep going.
“I would have like to be more in the first 20 minutes of who we are, but that was the situation. You cannot expect in 90 minutes to play like that.
“We were solid and we didn’t concede chances. The second half was incredible. We scored seven goals!
“I know Schalke are in a tough period because they lost the last game… but we had to do our job and we did it.
“We were serious and I am incredibly happy to be in the draw for the quarter-finals.
“When I said (before the game) we are a ‘teenage team’ in the Champions League, I did not say: we are not going to fight.
"The best success in the history of the competition for us is the semi-final.
“Comparing that with Real Madrid, Barcelona or Bayern, they have how many Champions Leagues?
“The teenagers have patience and desire; they are not scary. We are trying to achieve for the second time to achieve for the second time: reaching the semi-finals.
“When people say: ‘you have too many’ in the competition, I don’t like it too much. One game is incredible and you can lose.
“Madrid are out and you see they are having a bad season but it isn’t fair because this competition is incredibly tough with incredible teams.
“We go through to the quarter-finals happy. It is so nice.”