Saturday, 26 May, 2018

Basel 0-4 Manchester City: Quotes & Tweets

Guardiola hails “extraordinary” Gundogan after Man City thrash Basel Basel 0-4 Manchester City: Quotes & Tweets
Frederick Owens | 15 February, 2018, 13:30

The Premier League leaders did still have their shaky moments, particularly at the back, and particularly in the opening exchanges.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola hailed Ilkay Gundogan's "extraordinary" display as he struck twice against Basel in the first leg of their Champions League Round of 16 tie.

The Argentine's lightning strike after just 73 seconds was followed by a second from the spot to leave Mauricio Pochettino's English side reeling.

"To win 4-0 away in the last 16 is an unbelievable result, we are nearly in the quarter-finals, but I am not saying we are already there, out of respect for Basel", said Guardiola.

City put four goals past the Swiss side as they made a huge step toward progressing to the quarter-finals stage of the competition. With his team still trying to win a quadruple of trophies, Guardiola had the luxury of substituting Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling around the hour mark for fit-again pair David Silva and Leroy Sane. They were four awesome goals.

It was the Argentinian's 14th goal in 11 games in 2018. They have enough ways of scoring goals so when Ilkay Gundogan heads in a corner you know you're in for a tough night.

That point about last season is a surprising one.

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Fernandinho said they need to reach the level of Barca, Madrid and German champions Bayern Munich and echoed the sentiments of Vincent Kompany, who said they have underperformed in the competition in previous years.

"If we have a draw at home that won't give us a good feeling".

"I thought the pitch was a bit hard, it was freezing out there", said Kompany while Guardiola described the pitch as "dangerous".

City is battling for honours on four fronts and the return fixture with the Swiss champion will come on the back of a Carabao Cup final date against Arsenal and Premier League showdowns with the Gunners and Chelsea. We started well, we created chances and managed to win balls but, as I said yesterday, we needed a ideal night.

The German winger is back just two weeks after an ankle injury, well ahead of the predicted six the club had forecasted which Guardiola admitted has surprised him.

Basel boss Raphael Wicky said the first leg has been effectively decided by City's first-half goal flurry.

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