Pep Guardiola said his players were exceptional and has no regrets after City were knocked out of the Champions League by Real Madrid.

After the 3-3 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu last week, it was another thrilling game against the Spanish champions with Kevin De Bruyne’s thunderous strike levelling after Rodrygo’s opener.

With the teams unable to be separated after extra-time, the match went to penalties with Real securing a place in the semi-finals with a shootout victory.

It was a game that City dominated with two thirds of possession and nine shots on target to Real’s three, but the visitors held on for a 1-1 and progressed as City missed two of our five penalties.

“Congratulations to Real Madrid - they defended so deep with incredible solidarity,” Guardiola said.

“We did everything. I don’t have any regrets about what we have done.

“Always as managers we try to create more and concede less in every single game because that helps to win. We did everything, defensively and offensively.

“They made a good goal. There were two, three, four transitions but it is normal at that level with the quality they have.

“We played exceptionally in all departments. Unfortunately, we could not win. It is what it is.”

It is the third time in three years that we have faced Real at the knockout stages beating them both times in our ties at the Etihad.

The City boss said Carlo Ancelotti’s side defended deeper on this occasion to try to narrow the space and allow fewer chances.

“Two years ago we won 4-3 we played outstanding and last season as well,” Guardiola added.

“They defended deeper than previous seasons and we create the chances to do it but football is about scoring goals. They did it better than us.

“I have the duty to say thank you to my players for the way they played but this is about results. They will be in the semi-finals, we will not. The performance and commitment was exceptional.”

It was our third penalty shootout of the season following defeat to Arsenal in the Community Shield and win over Sevilla in the European Super Cup.

While it’s a heartbreaking way to go out of the competition, Guardiola believes we deserved to win the clash before it reached that stage.

“It is what it is, sometimes you win penalties, sometimes not,” he added.

“The way we played, we should have done it before. We did not convert the chances we had and we defended the transition really well.

“Everyone was at a high level. To beat Real Madrid, we had to perform our best. We were our best but it was not enough.”