The road to the Milan final of this year’s UEFA Champions League have been quite interesting with its attendant twist and turns.
One pairing football bluffs will be hoping to see in Milan in the 2016 final will be high-flying Manchester City against the clinical Bayern Munich side.
While that would be an unfamiliar terrain for the Citizens who are only coming this far in their entire club history, it is no ‘big deal’ for neither Pep Guardiola nor Bayern Munich who both have had their hands on Europe’s most priced club trophy in recent past.
Among other things, a Man City vs Bayern final will provide a veritable platform for coaches; Manuel Pellegrini and Guardiola to prove their worth.
Already, Guardiola has been named as the replacement for Pellegrini at the Etihad but the Chilean will be more than glad to show he is no lesser coach to his successor by beating him to the Champions League trophy and by extension set a record with the Citizens.
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Though Guardiola has won the Champions League in time past with Barcelona, the Spaniard is keen to do same with Bayern in his last year with the Bavarians as that remains the only missing significant trophy on his win list.
Desperate to complete a hat trick of wins in Europe, humbling semi final defeats to Real and Barca have left a cloud over Guardiola’s reign with Bayern.
Of all the potential semi final opponents, City might fancy Bayern most.
Not only will Manuel Pellegrini have a point to prove against the man who will replace at the end of the season – but City have a great record against the German giants.
The two sides have been drawn against each other in the Champions League three times in the last five years.
The record is three wins apiece, with City coming out on top in the most recent encounter last season – a Sergio Aguero hat-trick securing a 3-2 victory.
If City will get past Real Madrid to set up a possible date with Bayern Munich in the Milan final, one player they will be banking heavily on his Belgium International, Kevin De Bruyne who has always have been phenomenal since his arrival from Germany.
“We are looking forward to the semis. It is only two games away from the final. We will try to do everything to reach the final.” He said
While many are keen to see what a City/Bayern final will look that, one cannot be assertive if Pellegrini thinks something extra; facing his successor.
In the run to the semi final draws in which City eventually avoided Bayern and were pitched with Real Madrid, Pellegrini claimed facing Guardiola was no big deal.
Asked what a tie with Guardiola would mean, Pellegrini replied: “For me, exactly the same. It doesn’t matter.”