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Guardiola accepts Manchester City’s legacy depends on Champions League | Manchester City

Pep Guardiola has said his Manchester City side must win the Champions League before they can be regarded as one of the greatest teams of all time, despite their superb domestic record since his first Premier League title in 2018.

A treble of the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League would make them only the second team in English history to win all three trophies in the same season. It would, however, be the second time Guardiola has managed a side to the treble, after Barcelona’s triumph in La Liga, the Copa del Rey and the Champions League in 2008-09.

That team are regarded by many as one of the greatest, a tag his current City side are beginning to become associated with after Wednesday night’s destruction of Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-finals.

But Guardiola agrees with those who feel only success in Europe will solidify City’s place among the all-time greats. “The team is really good but I’m in agreement with the media and people saying we have to win in Europe to be considered as the same type to those teams,” he said.

“Those teams, they’ve won not just once, but many times in Europe. It’s amazing being here again, nothing is going to change that but if we are considered one of the best teams we have to win the Champions League. My opinion is not going to change but to be in the books, the real books, you have to do that.”

Guardiola believes his time in English football has changed him for the better as a coach. “Absolutely,” he said. “English football belongs to England and every manager has his own ideas – It didn’t change anything here.

“Did Germany change me as a manager? Of course, because I had to get to know new players, a new style, new managers, a new way to relate to the media, and for every manager it is the same. The longer you are in it here, the better manager you are than at the beginning of your career.”

He revealed his love for English football was emphasised by Sheffield Wednesday’s dramatic comeback against Peterborough on Thursday night, when the hosts overturned a 4-0 deficit from the first leg to reach the League One playoff final.

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“In other countries, if a team had lost the first leg 4-0, no chance. It was 4-4 [on aggregate] and after that it went 4-1, 5-1, then penalties! This is England and it is unique. That is why it is so special and that is why I am here for a long time. I love it.”

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