Manchester City must back exhilarating form with trophies
After claiming 21 consecutive wins Manchester City are being called the best club in the world by many, but I prefer to wait until the end of season.
If Pep Guardiola’s team fail to win the Champions League, then it’s tough to say they are the best in the world, even if they easily claimed the Premier League and break some winning records.
They’re close to breaking Coritiba’s record of 24-wins and beating the Brazilian club will of course be a great achievement, but I am sure that everyone at City would exchange that achievement for a Champions League trophy. If they set a record but fail in the decisive matches their achievement will lose relevance.
So, they just have to focus on their final goals instead of thinking about breaking records. For now, they can keep winning, but if there’s a need to rest players Guardiola should think ahead and manage his resources in order to be at their strongest when they most need it.
Gabriel Jesus is at the right club
Former Palmeiras player Gabriel Jesus notched his 16th Champions League goal last week and is getting closer to reach the top-10 of Brazilian goalscorers in the competition.
As the third on that list (27 goals) I can only advise him to stay professional and committed because he is at the right club to continue playing and scoring many times in the world’s most important club competition. At City he has a fine chance to climb that ladder and become one of the most prolific Brazilian goalscorers in Europe.
He just needs to continue working on having Guardiola’s confidence to play regularly and he seems to have all conditions to do so as we are seeing recently.
Gareth Bale’s quality was never in doubt
I’ve said many times during the last year or so that Gareth Bale is an excellent player whose career was wasting away at Real Madrid, but happily he seems to be finding his focus again and doing what he does best which is scoring goals and assisting his teammates.
Jose Mourinho was patient enough to wait for the Welsh attacker to be back to his best physical and psychological form. He could be key to Spurs at an important time of the season.
Bale’s recent form may even get Real Madrid thinking about his reintegration next season, but before that the Welshman must continue to play his best for Spurs.
His future may be a return to Spain, staying in England or even going to another country, but what is more positive right now is that he seems to be finding his love for football once again.
Barça’s comeback against Sevilla had Koeman’s hand
Barcelona earned an excellent result this Wednesday against Sevilla coming back from 2-0 down to reach the Copa del Rey Final.
Despite the difficult circumstances for the club right now, Ronald Koeman is doing a solid job trying to bring the club back to the top. It was nice to see his joy after the match.
His smile and celebration with the players is a clear example that he is focused on his work of putting Barça back where it belongs. The chemistry he is building with the group seems to be growing and that’s the best that can happen to raise the optimism around the club.
The whole group must be congratulated for showing a great attitude in the tie, always believing until the end. Now it’s time to follow this win in other competitions.
Time to leave Champions League with grace
As I mentioned previously, I don’t think it’s possible for Barcelona to comeback from a 1-4 loss against PSG. The French side are too good to give up that lead.
But the Copa del Rey win is important for the team’s confidence and make them believe they can do much better than they did at Camp Nou.
Barcelona will be better in France.
Of course, as a former Barcelona player I would love to see such an epic comeback in Paris, but honestly I don’t believe it will happen. For now, I’m just happy about the excellent response Barca showed against Sevilla. That was a great sign to the future.
Copa del Rey won’t save Barça’s season
It’s always nice to claim trophies and reaching the Copa del Rey Final puts Barcelona closer to more silverware, but a cup win won’t save the club’s season.
In my opinion, with the Champions League as good as gone, the team must chase the Spanish title. They are still in with a good chance given there are so many matches still to come.
It they manage to grab those two titles in this turbulent season, then yes, I would say it would be a successful campaign.
Ter Stegen continues to shine at the highest level
Barça’s comeback against Sevilla owed a lot to goalkeeper Ter Stegen who saved a penalty in what was a decisive moment in the match.
We always mention that attackers are the ones that shine the most thanks to the goals they score, and I agree with that, but what the German goalkeeper have been doing in the last few seasons – with the club in a tough situation – is fantastic. He is a very important piece of the team right now.
Griezmann needs to prove his value to Koeman
There was a great expectation about Antoine Griezmann from Barça’s fans when he arrived at the club after so many good performances for Atletico Madrid, but he is finding it difficult to guarantee his starting place.
He has been relegated to the bench recently and the team’s good results seem to prove that Koeman was right to do that. It doesn’t invalidate the fact that Griezmann is still a great player that I like a lot but he needs to prove it on the pitch every time he is called by the manager.
I believe Griezmann still has time to prove his value at the club, but it is crucial that he show us why the club paid so much to have him on its ranks with his displays on the pitch when he gets the chance.
Bartomeu’s presidency harms club’s public image
The club went through another tough week outside the pitch with police searching it’s installations and interrogating members of the resigning board. It’s now clear that Josep Bartomeu’s presidency had more bad than good moments and the club needs to turn the page on a bad chapter.
Elections are coming and soon we’ll have a new president and I can only wish all the best to him in order to rebuild Barcelona and stabilise it not only from a financial point, but also on the pitch.