Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City judged by whether they win or not. Champions League and always will be.
City under Guardiola won the Premier League and the Carabao Cup four times and an FA Cup, set a record 100 points in 2017-18 and became the first English club to score a domestic trio the following season.
However, they never won the Champions League, lost the final in 2021 and faced RB Leipzig in the second leg of their last 16 draw after a 1-1 draw in Germany. City are still in three competitions this season, but Guardiola knows it will be decided based on their course in Europe.
He said: “The public. That doesn’t mean I agree with it, but I will certainly be judged accordingly. The first day since I came here, the first game in the Champions League, the first time I sat here, people said I came here to win the Champions League. What did I say’?
“If I were Real Madrid’s manager – it won’t happen – I could understand that but I don’t know here. But I accept it. No matter how much I travel, it won’t change that.
“It’s the same in many theories about this club: we can’t control him. It’s great that you’re the main favorites at the start of the season, even though we didn’t win. The reality is on the pitch: 95 minutes, give your best against teams like this.”
Guardiola admits it’s been a tough campaign for City as they try to piece together their winning streak to overhaul Premier League top Arsenal.
“It’s been a tough season for all of us, myself included, with the World Cup and many other things.”
City also face Burnley in the FA Cup before the international break, and Guardiola wants to make sure they’re still fighting on three fronts after the internationals.
“It will be good to be alive for the last two and a half months, extending our competitive stay and being close to Arsenal.”