Messi is Pep Guardiola's biggest problem - Alan Shearer - Dove Bulletin - Online News Bulletin

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Monday, 8 April 2019

Messi is Pep Guardiola's biggest problem - Alan Shearer


Barcelona and Lionel Messi are the biggest reason I don't think Manchester City will win the quadruple.

Looking at the Champions League draw, if Pep Guardiola's side makes the final then I would expect Barca to be their opponents in Madrid, and I don't think they would beat them.

It would be a great game, but any team with Messi playing for them would be the favourites.

City, of course, has to get there first. They have not faced anyone of note yet in Europe, but if they continue their progress then that is where they will probably meet the toughest opponents of their entire season.

They should get past Tottenham in the quarter-finals, although Tuesday's first leg at Spurs' new stadium will be a big occasion and it is going to be tough for them.

Get through that and it is either Juventus or Ajax in the semi-finals. Again, there is no easy option there, so it is definitely going to be the hardest competition for them to win.

I believe they could win the other three trophies but, on top of everything else, the Champions League could be too much for them.

The fact that, with a maximum of 12 games left, City can look at their remaining fixtures and know they are so close to a clean sweep is an amazing achievement in itself.

Manchester City already has the League Cup in the bag and I think they will win the FA Cup.

Watford frustrated them for long periods at Etihad Stadium in March and City only made the breakthrough thanks to Raheem Sterling's controversial opening goal, which was initially ruled out for offside before being given. Playing them in the final will not be easy, but again it is a game where their quality and mentality should see them through.

The Premier League is a lot harder to call, but it is in their own hands - if Guardiola's side wins their six remaining league games they are champions.

I don't think they will win all six, but we are talking about a team who have won 22 of their last 23 matches in all competitions so it would not surprise me if they did.

There are some tricky games in there for City though, starting at Crystal Palace next weekend.
What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments section.

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