Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has claimed that his side can be proud of their exploits over the course of the season but must “recover mentally” after exiting the Champions League at the hands of Liverpool.
Manchester City were humbled 3-0 in their quarter-final first leg at Anfield and, despite going in a goal up at half time in the second leg, were ultimately beaten 2-1 at the Etihad Stadium.
Guardiola was also sent to the stands by referee Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz just after the half-time whistle to make his feelings heard about Leroy Sane’s 41st-minute effort being ruled out for offside.
The Spaniard bemoaned his compatriot’s decisions, insisting that a two-goal lead would have completely turned the game around in Man City’s favour, but was eager to congratulate opposite number Jurgen Klopp.
“I said it was a goal when the ball was passed to Leroy Sane,” Guardiola told reporters at full time. “That’s why he sent me off.
“It would have been different to go in 2-0. It’s different when (Mohamed) Salah’s goal at Anfield is offside. It’s different when Gabriel Jesus’s goal at Anfield is offside.
“In this competition the teams are so equal and the influence of refereeing decisions is so important. We’ll go again next season. Big congratulations to Liverpool, Hopefully they can represent England well in the semi-final.
“We’ve had 10 amazing months. We have to recover mentally for the six games remaining. Our 10 month winning spell is exceptional. You have to analyse game by game.”