Leagues, Manchester City, Story, UEFA Champions League


Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola stressed it’s how his team will react to conceding goals in the Champions League that will decide how far they will go in the competition.

BASEL, SWITZERLAND — Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany says they don’t have an inferiority complex in Europe but admits they’ve underperformed in the Champions League.

City have only gone beyond the last-16 of the competition once — in 2015 when they were beaten by Real Madrid in a tepid performance against the Spanish side.

They were beaten by Barcelona in both 2013 and 2014 — losing each of the four legs — while last season they were knocked out by Ligue 1 side Monaco on away goal’s rule.

Pep Guardiola side have been handed a kinder draw in the last-16 this year against Swiss champions Basel, and Kompany says they can be successful if they continue to improve.

“I wouldn’t call it an inferiority complex but a lack of experience for sure,” Kompany told a news conference. “We’ve been caught out a few times on occasions when we shouldn’t have but I think things have changed now.

Manchester City haven’t done as well in the Champions League as they’d hoped.

“If there is a year, if there is a time, if there is a moment when the club is ready to feel at home in the competition, then it’s now.

“I’m not going to say it’s a matter of time because some teams never win it, but if every year we are going to go with the same confidence, then if not this year or the year after that, but eventually we’ll get there. I’m sure of it.”

City go into the tie chasing an unprecedented quadruple with the team already 16 points clear at the top of the Premier League, in the final of the Carabao Cup and competing in the FA Cup as well as the Champions League.

But Kompany insists there has been no talk of winning all four trophies among the players despite their brilliant form so far.

“I can honestly say, the key thing that I’ve noticed with this team — which I can’t say will get us all the trophies or how far it will get us — but so far it’s the ability to switch back on for every single game.

“[We have] motivation, respect for the opponents and the fact that we will prepare correctly and will do the right things to be a 100 percent when we play.

“That’s one thing I haven’t experienced yet in any of the teams I’ve been in before. Talk of the quadruple — none — but winning the next game and the next game and the next game and that belief, always.”

Jonathan is ESPN FC’s Manchester City correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @jonnysmiffy.



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