Guardiola’s ‘wrong calls’ killed Man City, says Hamann
Former Liverpool midfielder, Dietmar Hamann, has blamed Pep Guardiola for Manchester City’s stunning Champions League exit at the hands of Real Madrid on Wednesday night, claiming he ‘suffocates’ his players and does not give them enough ‘responsibility’ in big matches.
City appeared to have one foot in the final in Paris when Riyad Mahrez put them two goals ahead on aggregate with 17 minutes to go, but Real forced extra-time with a sensational comeback.
Rodrygo scored twice in 90 seconds to level the tie before Karim Benzema’s penalty in extra-time sent Real through at the expense of Guardiola’s devastated City side in one of the most dramatic matches in Champions League history.
Guardiola has faced criticism for his side’s failure to progress, which prolongs the club’s wait for a first Champions League crown.
Hamann believes the Spaniard should shoulder the blame for City’s exit, and claimed Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp and Real manager Carlo Ancelotti would not have made the same mistakes.
“If you give players responsibility they act responsible,” Hamann wrote on Twitter. “If you try to play the game for them they won’t.
“Guardiola suffocates teams and players to make their own decisions. Compare that to Ancelotti’s or Klopp’s teams.”
Hamann later told Football Daily: “You can’t win games on a tactics board. Once the whistle goes the players have got to make decisions and not for the first time one of his teams made the wrong decisions at the wrong time.”
In a separate Tweet, the former German international said he had “never seen a team as helpless as City” in the last 15 minutes of the second leg at the Bernabeu.
“Usually, you always get one more chance [but] they never,” he added.
City did have two glorious chances to put the tie beyond Real before Rodrygo’s last-gasp double ensured they suffered more European heartbreak.
Jack Grealish twice went agonisingly close to extending the away side’s lead as he had a shot cleared off the line by Ferland Mendy and another effort diverted just past the post by the foot of Real Madrid goalkeeper, Thibaut Courtois.
Fernandinho missed City’s best opportunity in extra-time but Real held on to close out a famous victory.