Pep Guardiola knows this match vs FC Copenhagen can be a tricky one. He spoke about that, memories from his time as a player and had some squad updates.
Let’s ride straight in-
“I have been here with the national team against Denmark and it is so tough, the crowd are so close and imagine two months without games, the crowd will want to be at the football,” he said.
“I have huge respect. I said to the players this morning you have to prepare mentally and be ready to suffer.
“It will be a tight, tight game 100% - I feel it - and normally my guts don’t lie to me!”
“Of course, he came here after we had won two Premier Leagues [in a row) but he adapted really well coming here,” Guardiola pointed out.
“I [also] think we have incredible group of players here, great characters who embrace the new ones who are coming.
“That’s comes because we have an incredible captain and staff.
“Erling felt that straight away. Immediately he arrived he was part of this [group].
“And after that it is play, don’t worry we have time. You didn’t come for a few days it’s for three, four years because of the contract he signed.
“We said you have time.
“We don’t put pressure on him and say you have to score goals for us.
“No. We said get involved with what we do and the rest will come naturally.
“He is so strong mentally after one goal, he wants a second one and then a third.
“You see his numbers at his age - in the Champions League even Messi does not have these numbers art his age.
“He has scored goals everywhere all the time. He has a special mentality and attributes and skills.
“We are delighted to have him. And we are delighted he is back after two months out.
“It’s a long time, like Kevin [De Bruyne] who was out for five months.
“Now they are back, and we are really, really pleased.”
“My experience tells me this [that the last 16 first leg is always tricky],” Guardiola added.
“The exception was Sporting two years ago when we won 5-0 - but we scored five goals from six chances.
“But always I have huge respect for their first leg in the last 16 - always.”
It should be a fun game.