Josep Guardiola still classes Manchester City as UEFA Champions League newcomers, but as UEFA.com discovers, they cannot use inexperience as an excuse when they take on Monaco.
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Josep Guardiola suggested on Monday that his Manchester City side's relative inexperience in the UEFA Champions League is taking some getting used to.
However, Guardiola and his side are unlikely to be able to use inexperience at this level as an excuse in their round of 16 tie against Monaco. Using its best guess at the starting line-ups, UEFA.com did the maths and discovered that the Premier League team have much more UEFA Champions League experience to call on than their opponents.
MANCHESTER CITY (UEFA Champions League appearances in brackets)
Caballero (13); Fernandinho (62), Otamendi (34), Stones (5), Kolarov (34); Silva (48), Touré (66), De Bruyne (21); Sterling (21), Agüero (52), Sané (3).
TOTAL: 359 UEFA Champions League appearances
Subašić (15); Sidibé (8), Glik (5), Raggi (14), Mendy (5); Silva (12), Fabinho (15), Bakayoko (8), Lemar (6); Germain (9), Falcao (11).
TOTAL: 108 UEFA Champions League appearances
"To be here is not easy," said the former Barcelona and Bayern coach, whose two previous employers have won Europe's premier club competition ten times combined. "People can think Manchester City have to be here but a lot of big clubs are not here. We are lucky guys. Our recent history is quite good but over the long history, Manchester City was not here for a long time."
Guardiola, who is two shy of 100 games as a coach in European club competition, has never failed to reach the UEFA Champions League semi-finals in seven attempts. City, by contrast, last term made it to the final four for the first time at their fifth attempt.