Men's Team

Begiristain excited by Borussia Dortmund draw

Txiki Begiristain says he is hugely excited by the prospect of our forthcoming Champions League quarter-final ties with Borussia Dortmund.

Today’s draw pitted City against the Bundesliga side in an exciting last-eight match-up with the first leg to be played at the Etihad before we travel to Germany for the decider.

Dortmund have established a reputation for being one of the continent’s most exciting, attack-minded sides.

And, as he looked ahead to next month’s matches, City director of football Begiristain said he was already eagerly looking forward to the prospect.

“I remember going to Dortmund in my first away game with City (in 2012) when we lost that game, and we went out of the group. So, you can see everything has changed at least from our side,” Begiristain recalled.

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“They are consistent, they are doing very well in Europe, they are always in the Champions League and in the group phase and also in this draw but City has changed a lot.

“We are consistent, we are there always getting in the quarter finals and keeping our dream to go through.

“They have a good balance between experienced players but also they have a lot of young players and talent there and they are working well.

“They love the box-to-box game and it’s something we have to avoid. Try to break the line at the right time and to keep the structure solid when we lose the ball.”

City’s superb 2-0 last-16 second leg win against fellow German side Borussia Monchengladbach last Tuesday saw us chalk up our 24th win out of the last 25 games.

It’s a remarkable run of form that has seen Pep Guardiola’s side open up a 14 point lead at the top of the Premier League as well as maintain our quest for success in the Champions League and two domestic cup competitions.

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Begiristain said he was proud of the way City’s hard work, selflessness and intensity was producing such magnificent results on the field.

And he said City were determined to maintain the guiding principles that have proved so successful over the past few months.

“As a sporting director I am so proud and happy it is happening again,” Begiristain added.

“I think we have to keep doing what we are doing well. Just trying to play in the opponents’ half, to make the opponent be very far from the goal.

“We did it against Monchengladbach, we got the ball and it’s the only way to prevent the opponent from scoring goals.

“The difficulty is of always keep that level, to keep the standards playing this way and good attacking football and the intensity of the game when we have the ball.

“This is unique, this on the players and mainly Pep and his staff.”

Should City manage to progress past Dortmund, the incentive is a semi-final against either Champions League holders Bayern Munich or Paris Saint-Germain.

However, the City director of football said no-one was looking any further than the last eight.

“I think in the past seasons we always looking at draws and semi-finals and we have been out,” Begiristain reflected.

“The only way we can think now we can do now is think of Dortmund and hopeful avoid injuries everyone thinking about the team, try o go through and then see what happens with Bayern and Paris Saint-Germain.”

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