Pep Guardiola has questioned his Manchester City side's mental strength ahead of Tuesday's decisive Champions League quarter final tie with Liverpool, with the Citizens heading into the game looking to overturn a 3-0 deficit after last week's disappointing result at Anfield.
Guardiola's side trail Liverpool 3-0 at the halfway stage of their Champions League quarter final tie and the Spaniard admitted the collapse against United could play on their minds when the crucial second leg tie kicks off on Tuesday.
“Yeah, it can happen. It’s difficult in itself, it’s difficult for our mood not winning and, yeah, that can happen. But maybe we will improve for the future on that, to realise that sometimes it’s not enough what you’ve done to win the games," said Guardiola, as quoted by the Mirror.
“In the first-half we tried to do what we’ve done all season, but maybe it’s not enough to win at Champions League level. If that’s so, I will have to recognise that I’m not good enough or the way we want to play is not able to do that.
"But I don’t think so, because of what we’ve done this season and in the first-half [against United], even in moments in the second-half."
Despite winning the Champions League twice with Barcelona, Guardiola has struggled in the tournament since leaving the Nou Camp in 2012. Regardless, he praised his side's performances over the season and the first half performance against arch rivals United.
He added: “I have to be happy. I like to watch my team, the way we play this season and the way we played in the first half against United. But when you play against Liverpool or in Europe, when you have that momentum, you have to close the door. And we didn’t close it [against United]."
Guardiola suffered three successive semi final defeats with Bayern Munich and went out at the last 16 stage to Monaco with City last season. When he was asked how he can make City more clinical in terms of closing out games he said they need to continue creating chances.
He said: “I thought many times about that. I’ve dropped a lot of Champions League games in the space of 10 or 15 minutes. I think about that many times, but I feel that when you dominate and create chances, you are closer to winning games and I think this season showed that."