Pep Guardiola has once again played down talk of claiming an unprecedented quadruple this season, following comments by Oleksandr Zinchenko.
Manchester City remain in the hunt to win a clean sweep of silverware this season, the Etihad outfit currently 14 points clear at the top of the Premier League, having already booked their place in the League Cup final, and still involved in the FA Cup and Champions League.
Pep Guardiola’s side to became the first in English football history to complete a domestic treble in 2018/19, while Manchester United remain the only English side to win the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League in the same season, but no team has yet been able to win all four major trophies.
City are, however, favourites to win all four competitions following their sensational form this season, leading to left-back Zinchenko to talk up the prospect of making history.
“Inside the dressing room or inside the team I can see the hungry eyes, everyone is so hungry for the titles and that is what you want,” Zinchenko said.
“This period right now I would say is the most important two months in our careers and especially for players like Sergio Agüero and Fernandinho, who have been here around 10 years each: they deserve it so we are going to try. Like Bayern Munich showed last year – they won everything and the other year [2008-09] Barcelona did it as well with Pep and I think everything is possible. We have an unbelievable squad, the best players in the world, definitely, why not?”
However, Pep Guardiola has described the prospect of winning four trophies this season as ‘a utopia’, attempting to keep his players focussed on the task of winning one game at a time.
“I am older than Mr Zinchenko, I have more experience and I don’t agree with him,” Guardiola said at his pre-match press conference ahead of this evening’s Champions League clash with Borussia Mönchengladbach.
“The only thing he has to be worried about is trying to do a good game and try to go through. This is the only way. Four titles is a utopia.
“It never happened before and I think it’s never going to happen. We just think about this one, then the next one at Goodison Park, then the international break. Hopefully the players can come back safe and well because we play for important things when they come back, and this is the only important thing.”
City have a comfortable 2-0 lead going into Tuesday’s Champions League second-leg against Mönchengladbach, and the 50-year-old said his side have to ‘handle the pressure’ and expectation of winning every game.
“They have to handle the pressure – to play in this team, at this club, in this organisation, they have to know it’s not nice to lose a game. We have to win and win, that’s for sure. I don’t know what’s going to happen at the end of the season.
“What we have to do – like we have done since day one – is think about the game we are going to play against Borussia Mönchengladbach. That’s the only thing I’m concerned about.”
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