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City must deliver ‘perfect game’ to complete comeback against Liverpool – Guardiola says

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Pep Guardiola says his “extraordinary” Manchester City team will have to deliver “almost the perfect game” if they are to produce one of the great Champions League comebacks to overcome Liverpool on Tuesday night.

City trail Liverpool 3-0 going into the second leg of their quarter-final at the Etihad Stadium and are bidding to become only the third side, after Deportivo La Coruna and Barcelona, to overturn at least a three goal deficit.

Their preparations suffered another set-back on Saturday when Manchester United staged a dramatic fightback from two goals down to win 3-2 to stop City from winning the Premier League title with six matches to go.

City, who have kept just three clean sheets in their past 11 games in all competitions, will need to score five times if Liverpool claim an away goal and Guardiola is under no illusions of the scale of the task against Jurgen Klopp’s side, who have 37 goals in 11 Champions League matches this term.

“Of course to go through you have to make almost the perfect game,” the City manager said. “Create chances, be clinical, concede few chances. All the conditions have to be almost perfect to go through so we know it’s going to tough but we have 90 minutes and in football everything can happen. We are going to try. We don’t have think about how many we have to score. We have to score the first one and then make a second one and we’ll see where the momentum takes us.

“I don’t know [if the last two results have caused psychological damage] but if we are not able to do it, it will be a good lesson for the future. We are going to see it’s a good test. Football is a challenge like life and we are happy to handle it.

“This year and even in the last game [against United] we showed we are able to create a few chances in just a few minutes and the opponents know that, too.

The 33 things that explain Liverpool’s remarkable 33/1 win over Man City

“If we concede – don’t give up. It’s more than 90 minutes. Many times we created a lot of chances in short period of time, we have to be clinical and if we are not clinical then move on to the next one.

“I think to reach the semi-final would be only the second time in our history. We don’t need to talk about motivation. The way they play in every game shows what they want to do. My team is extraordinary, it’s not comparable to many others, it’s top, exceptional. I will be close to them no matter what happens between now and the end of the season. It’s a joy to be manager of them.

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 “We have to defend better. I don’t want to lose but I was so delighted to lose the way we did [against United], the way we played is outstanding, I am so happy.”

Guardiola says a historic comeback would help elevate City’s status in European teams, and although he believes they may need more time to scale Europe’s heights, he is confident they are on the right road.

“I think they are know it [would be a historic night], but I agree,” Guardiola said. “We need titles in Europe – it’s complicated but you need nights that make you understand it. Beating Barcelona [3-1 last season] was so special because we know they’re the best team in the world.

But it will happen sooner or later because what this club has done in the last 10 years in terms of creating facilities and making it bigger, it will happen. For the big clubs you need time but hopefully we can do it. Maybe next year but sooner it will happen.

“Yes Liverpool are one of the worst [teams we could be facing with a 3-0 deficit] but I’d say the same against Barcelona or Real Madrid or Bayern Munich. They [Liverpool] have qualities but so do the other teams at that level.

“The mountain you have to climb is so high but this team is ready to fight with all the teams in Europe, I am sure, especially at home. But they are so good, the teams, it’s difficult. For the next step maybe we need more time but my feeling is next season we will be better.”

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GRAPHIC VIDEO: Angry boxer attacks coach after losing match

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Boxing fans were left shocked when a fighter on the Hughie Fury-Kubrat Pulev undercard attacked his own trainer ring-side.

Levan Shonia gave viewers more than just a warmup spar when he took on unbeaten Spas Genov.

The Georgian fighter went on to lose the match, his 12th career defeat.

But instead of calling it quits, Shonia appeared to take out his anger on his unfortunate coach.

The pair were standing in the corner, with Shonia inside the ring with his trainer standing on the edge.

And for no apparent reason, Shonia was seen throwing a punch with his right hand, hitting his trainer on the shoulder.

The stunned man took a moment to take in what was happening before knocking Shonia back with a slap.

The response then saw Shonia throw another punch, this time with his left.

Watch video here..

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Super Eagles jersey worn by Mikel Obi during 2018 World Cup added to FIFA museum collection

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The FIFA museum located in Zürich, Switzerland has just announced that the jersey worn by Mikel Obi at Nigeria’s 2-0 victory at the Volgograd Arena at the 2018 World Cup has been added to its collection.

 

Below is how they announced it…

Argentina couldn’t claim three points against hardy newcomers, Iceland, but the @NG_Supereagles did – and they did it in style. The jersey worn by @Mikel_John_Obi at Nigeria’s 2-0 victory at the Volgograd Arena at the 2018 World Cup has been added to the FIFA Museum collection

The Super Eagles jersey worn by Mikel Obi during 2018 World Cup has been added to the FIFA museum collection

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Emery demands first-half improvement despite 11th straight Arsenal win

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Unai Emery demanded Arsenal improve their first-half performances despite the Gunners recording their 11th straight win in all competitions by beating Sporting CP.

But, as in Monday’s Premier League defeat of Leicester City, Arsenal did not impress in a flat first-half performance.

Although Arsenal are closing in on Europa League qualification, Emery feels there is an obvious area where his team can get better in the weeks to come.

“Each match there is a big opportunity to improve and one is this,” Emery told a news conference. “We spoke about it before the match.

“When we were in the dressing room at half-time we spoke and said, ‘okay today also, we cannot impose our game in first 45 minutes, but the second half we have the opportunity to change the result and continue in our way, thinking only of winning this match and improving things in the second half’.

“And I think the team did that in the second 45 minutes. But we need to continue finding the solution for the first half to be better.

“The match, for the 90 minutes, there were different things happening tactically and individually.

“The first half is not clear for us, there was not a lot of chances. The second half step by step we imposed our job, our play to win this match.”

Emery has regularly spoken of his desire for Arsenal to thrive in the Europa League, a competition he won three years in a row with Sevilla.

And after Welbeck’s late impact ensured Arsenal moved clear at the top of Group E, Emery reiterated the value he places on the tournament.

“For us it’s very important because we want to finish first in this group,” Emery said of the win.

“And at the moment the other club who is with us is Sporting. But also because we want to continue this process. There were many positive things.”

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