Monchengladbach - Pep Guardiola admits he is glad his
Manchester City will avoid his ex-club Bayern Munich in the draw for the last
16 of the Champions League.
City booked their place in the knock-out phase on Wednesday
with a sluggish 1-1 draw at Borussia Moenchengladbach as both teams finished
with ten men.
The point confirms City will finish second in their group
with one game left to play.
Gladbach are confirmed in third -- which means the last 32
of the Europa League -- after bottom side Celtic lost 2-0 at home to Barcelona,
who win Group C.
Bayern will join City in the same pot when the draw for the
last 16 is made on Monday December 12 in Nyon.
The German giants will also finish second in their group
after their shock 3-2 defeat at Rostov with Atletico Madrid progressing as
Guardiola says he is delighted to have steered City to the
last 16, even more so to have avoided Bayern, who he took to the semi-finals in
each of the last three seasons.
"In the last 16, all the teams will be tough,"
"Bayern Munich, for example, are also second.
"The team who gets them is going to suffer and I'm glad
we won't play them."
Raffael's goal for Moenchengladbach midway through the first
half was cancelled out by City's David Silva on the stroke of half-time at
Gladbach then had captain Lars Stindl sent off on 50 minutes
for a second yellow card and subsequent red.
But both sides were left with ten men for the final half an
hour when City had Fernandinho dismissed for his second yellow after pulling
This was not a convincing display from City, who looked a
shadow of the side which stunned Barcelona 3-1 in Manchester three weeks ago.
Also read: Guardiola seeks right gear at petering Palace
They looked vulnerable in defence in the first half and have
now conceded nine goals on the road, failing to win any of their three away
matches in Europe.
For all their possession in the second half, their
star-studded attack failed to convert their chances.
But City are in last 16 for the fourth straight year and
Guardiola was delighted to have progressed.
- 'so happy' -
"I know how hard it is to win away from home, we have
to be so, so happy because some big teams will not be in the second
round," said Guardiola.
"Hopefully we can do well and qualify for the
"Four years ago, the second stage was a bit easier, but
now all the teams are so strong and anything can happen."
Guardiola said the Premier League will be their focus until
their European campaign resumes in February with their final match at Celtic
now a dead rubber.
"We will prioritise our games in the Premier
League," he said.
"We have Burnley and Chelsea before we have to think
about Celtic in ten days time.
"We have qualification in the bag, so that's decided
until February and we can focus on other things."
Gladbach are winless in their last six games, but punched
above their weight to hold City at home, especially having been routed by
Guardiola's side 4-0 in the away fixture last September.
The result relieves some of the pressure on coach Andre
Schubert, whose team is mid-table in Germany's top flight.
"Overall, we are very happy with the third place,"
"In the first half we played an outstanding game and could
have scored a second goal."For
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