Manchester City take on Real Madrid in the Champions League round of 16 on Wednesday night. Despite the daunting challenge of heading to the Santiago Bernabeu, Benjamin Mendy has revealed that the Citizens squad are confident of beating Los Blancos.
City made it through to the knockout phases of the competition after topping their group, while Real Madrid were runners-up, behind Paris Saint-Germain.
Zinedine Zidane’s side are a giant of European football, and have won the competition four times in the last six years.
But, Mendy revealed that he expects to face some of the best teams in world football throughout the Champions League.
City will keep the faith in Guardiola’s tactics, and they’ll go out to win the tie at Real Madrid, he said.
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“We play in the Champions League to face sides like Real – the kings of this competition with the most trophies,” Mendy told FourFourTwo.
“We are confident. We knew before the draw that we would play against a big team, but we’re not thinking, ‘How are we going to beat these?’
“We’re going to go there trusting the manager and playing our football – players love these games.
“We just want to show our best to go to the next round.”
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City have come under criticism for failing to progress into the deeper rounds of the Champions League.
They’ve only made the semi-finals once in their history; during the 2015-2016 season.
That year, they were knocked out by tonight’s opposition, Real Madrid.
The past two years, City have been eliminated at the quarter-final stage by Premier League rivals.
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But, Mendy insisted that the club aren’t feeling the pressure to perform on the big stage.
He won’t be listening to the critics if they fail to win the competition this year, claiming that it’s easy to blast the reigning Premier League champions.
“Some people say, ‘Manchester City need to win the Champions League – if they don’t, it’s over and they’re terrible’.
“But football isn’t like that. Look at last year: if you win against Spurs, everything is different.
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“You’re one inch away from winning or going out – Raheem Sterling scores but the goal is ruled out and we’re s**t.
“For me, we go there with no extra pressure – people can say what they want.”
City will be desperate to take an advantage back to the Etihad Stadium, and Guardiola has an exemplary record at the Bernabeu; just one defeat in eight visits as a manager.
But, the Citizens haven’t won at Real Madrid in their Champions League history; losing 3-2 in 2012, and 1-0 in 2016.
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