Manchester City 1, FC Basel 2 (agg: 5-2): Pep Guardiola blasts City's second-half complacency despite Champions League progression

Ross McLean
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Michael Lang scored Basel's winner, just as he did against Manchester United in the Champions League group stages in November (Source: Getty)

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola blasted his side’s second-half complacency as English football’s top-flight leaders reached the Champions League quarter-finals but surrendered their long-standing unbeaten home record to Basel last night.

While a much-changed City were never in any danger of not progressing given their 4-0 first-leg lead, Basel did secure victory on the night courtesy of strikes from Mohamed Elyounoussi and Michael Lang as Gabriel Jesus’s opener was overturned.

Defeat was City’s first at home since December 2016, when Chelsea won 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium.

“I’m so happy to be in the quarter-finals because it’s quite new for us,” said Guardiola.

“But in the second-half we forgot to attack, we forgot to play. When we pass the ball we do it to move through the opponents to attack. Just to pass the ball for itself is nothing. The second-half was really poor.

“It is not easy to play with a 4-0 lead. We tried, we spoke about that. But after 1-1, it didn’t happen. We just passed for itself and when that happens, that is not football.”

City opened the scoring on eight minutes as Bernardo Silva provided the ammunition with a low cross, which evaded stretching Basel goalkeeper Tomas Vaclik, and Jesus tapped into an empty net.

But the visitors were not prepared to roll over and levelled nine minutes later as Elyounoussi hammered past City stopper Claudio Bravo.

Basel completed their comeback inside the final 20 minutes as Elyounoussi’s superb reverse pass was collected by Lang, who netted his side’s late winner against Manchester United in the group stages in November, and he lashed beyond Bravo.

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