Man City prove Pep Guardiola right as they humble kings of Europe to edge closer to glory - David McDonnell

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Pep Guardiola said his players were ready to dethrone the kings of Europe – and now they await their own crowning in Lisbon.

Manchester City are into the last eight after dismantling the 13-time winners with a masterclass that has made Guardiola's side one of the favourites to go all the way in Portugal.

The Blues will come up against Lyon a week today, opponents they will not take lightly, having been beaten at home and held away by the French side in the group stage two years ago.

But the manner of City's deserved win and their performance suggests this may be the year when they can realise the club's last unfulfilled ambition and finally conquer Europe.

Man City prove Pep Guardiola right as they humble kings of Europe to edge closer to glory - David McDonnell health 第1张Guardiola made good on his declaration City would humble Real (Image: POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
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Real Madrid simply had no answer to City's relentless pressing and enterprise, embodied by match-winner Gabriel Jesus, who made the first and scored the second to send the Blues through.

When Karim Benzema cancelled out Raheem Sterling's early opener, it seemed as though the frailties that have plagued City in Europe in recent seasons could ultimately cost them again.

But Guardiola's men stepped up when it mattered, controlling the game from then on with such assurance and composure they made the newly-crowned Spanish champions look decidedly ordinary.

Real defender Raphael Varane in particular, a World Cup winner with France, is likely to have nightmares about this game – and Jesus in particular – for some time to come.

Man City prove Pep Guardiola right as they humble kings of Europe to edge closer to glory - David McDonnell health 第4张City pounced on two defensive mishaps (Image: POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
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Twice Jesus took full advantage of Varane's uncharacteristic sloppiness and loss of focus, the City striker's awareness and tenacity leading to goals on both occasions in either half.

Conditions at the sun-kissed Etihad were more Mediterranean than Mancunian, with the temperature at the end of a balmy day still nudging 25C when the two sides emerged.

Guardiola had told his players before the game to impose themselves from the start and they did just that, pressing relentlessly, the game-plan ultimately yielding the opening goal.

Jesus honed in on Varane in the ninth minute and his persistence paid off, winning the ball before squaring it for Sterling, who was presented with a tap-in for his 100 th City goal.

Man City prove Pep Guardiola right as they humble kings of Europe to edge closer to glory - David McDonnell health 第6张Benzema's equaliser was not enough to kickstart Real (Image: Getty Images)
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The goal settled any early anxiety City may have been feeling, as Guardiola's side began to play with customary fluency, one sweeping move ending with Sterling shooting just over.

Real served notice of their enduring threat in the 20 th minute, when Eden Hazard found Benzema, who wriggled free of Aymeric Laporte, Ederson doing well to block the shot.

It was a reminder to City of the dangers of switching off, but one they failed to heed in the 28th minute, when Benzema rose unchallenged to equalise with a towering header.

Despite that setback, City had chances to restore their lead. Foden shot wide, while De Bruyne whipped in a goal-bound corner, which Real keeper Thibaut Courtois did well to block.

Ilkay Gundogan put De Bruyne through on goal, but City's playmaker was shackled by Daniel Carvajal, who made a crucial interception.

Courtois was called upon again, just after the hour, to turn away a Jesus shot, as City upped the tempo in search of the goal they knew would all but kill the tie.

It came in the 68 th minute, Varane again the culprit, Jesus taking full advantage of his under-hit header to Courtois to beat the Real keeper to the ball and steer it into the net.

Despite taking one of Europe's biggest scalps, City still have many hurdles to clear if they are to go all the way, with Barcelona and Bayern Munich potential semi-final opponents.

But this was a night that confirmed City's coming of age in Europe – now they must prove their new-found maturity by going all the way in Portugal.

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