Winning FA Cup would be the best way to prepare for CL, says Guardiola

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola feels if his side can win the FA Cup, it will be the best way to prepare for their Champions League showdown against Real Madrid.

They booked an FA Cup semi-final with Arsenal by beating Newcastle 2-0 at St James’ Park. In the Premier League, Liverpool have already won the title when City lost to Chelsea last week.

“We are delighted after the defeat against Chelsea to be in London again at Wembley to play against Arsenal in the semi-final to try to reach the final of the FA Cup,” Guardiola was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.

“It’s always an incredible trophy and it gives us an extra bonus. We spoke after what happened in the Premier League – we need two more victories to qualify for the Champions League.

“But we have two competitions we can win. We made the first step today. It will be good to arrive against Real Madrid in the best condition.

“To win this title would be the best way to prepare for Madrid.”

Goals from the penalty spot by Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling helped City brush aside Newcastle.

“It was a fantastic goal from Raheem. For the penalty, I didn’t see the review. Gabriel Jesus could have headed the ball and I think the opponent pushed him,” Guardiola said.

“De Bruyne is definitely reliable and hopefully he can carry on because we struggled a lot this season with this,” he added.