Sky Sports’ Jamie Carragher believes Manchester City have to win the Champions League this season if they are to be ranked amongst the greatest club sides in European football.
Carragher has warned that legendary status won’t be applied to Pep Guardiola’s side even if they set a new record for the longest winning run in Europe unless they crown their stunning form with their first Champions League success.
City – who are through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, will face Tottenham in the Carabao Cup final next month and are 12 points clear at the top of the Premier League – have already set a new record for the longest winning run by an English top division club in all competitions after registering 20 successive wins.
“What we are seeing is unprecedented and the Premier League is won,” concluded Carragher on Monday Night Football. “They have done the domestic treble a couple of years ago, and that had never been done before, and it looks like they are on for that again.”
But is that enough?
“If they can have the longest winning run, they don’t need that to prove they are a special team. But these type of stats – something which means a lot to you but you don’t get a trophy for – you can’t then use it at the end of your career if you haven’t won the European Cup. It’s almost as if you win the European Cup and then you have the stats with it.
“The actual teams [Ajax in 1972 and 1995, Bayern Munich in 2020, Real Madrid in 2014, and Barcelona in 2005-06] they are competing with for this European record are legendary teams and they all have the European Cup. That is something City need this season.
“I know in the past they have spoken about winning the quadruple, but l think Pep Guardiola was counting the Charity Shield, but we don’t as much in this country.
“You are actually looking at it now and thinking ‘it’s only Bayern Munich who can stop them’.
Manchester City’s upcoming fixtures
|March 2||Premier League||Wolves (h)|
|March 7||Premier League||Man Utd (h)|
|March 10||Premier League||Southampton (h)|
|March 13||Premier League||Fulham (a)|
|March 16||Champions League||Monchengladbach (h)|
|March 20||FA Cup||Everton (a)|
|April 3||Premier League||Leicester (a)|
“The big thing for them is to get the Champions League trophy and hopefully for them, in the next four or five weeks, the longest winning run to put them right up there with some of the greatest teams we have seen in Europe – but they need that Champions League.”