Pep Guardiola has never coached a national team in his life, yet he might be the most influential international coach of the generation.
Far-Fetched Friday: Manchester City Win 2020 Champions League
Welcome back to Far-Fetched Friday, where every Friday we give you a bold prediction that we believe will come to fruition. This Friday, our prediction concerns the blue side of Manchester and their Champions League campaign.
Round of 16, Semi-Final, Round of 16, Quarter-Final, Quarter-Final. In that order, that is where Manchester City has finished in the Champions League in the last five years. With Tottenham's surprising run to last year's finals, that makes Manchester City the only modern-day premier league super, the Big-6, that has not played in a Champions League Final. With the large investment that has been made since the takeover in 2008, the club's failure to secure a Champions League trophy has become a true disappointment. To make matters worse, the club is facing a Champions League ban, meaning this might be the last chance for the current crop of players.
With these stakes at hand, Manchester City players understand what they must do. Their 2-1 first-leg victory over Real Madrid at the Bernabeu showed signs of a team fully intent on overcoming the mental lapses that have cost the team in recent years. That was the most professional performance we have seen from a Guardiola team since he took over in Manchester.
The next factor that will drive a successful campaign is Covid-19 itself. The break from top-flight football means the likes of Aymeric Laporte and Leroy Sane will be available for selection once the champions league returns. Additionally, City's position in the Premier League means they are no longer in contention for the trophy. That means they can direct their focus to the Champions League title.
With a full squad to select from, motivation from a looming multi-year champions league ban, and no need to compete in the champions league, Manchester City will win the 2020 Champions League whenever UEFA returns.
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