Man City fans see funny side as Grealish is seen in goal in training

Manchester City fans see the funny side as Jack Grealish is spotted IN GOAL during training… just hours after Pep Guardiola promised he won’t overthink his team for semi-final second leg with Real Madrid

  • Pep Guardiola is notorious for overthinking his team selections in Europe
  • When Jack Grealish was spotted in goal briefly during training, there was deja vu
  • Guardiola has promised he is not going to overthink his side on Wednesday night

If there’s one criticism levelled against Pep Guardiola’s greatness as a manager it’s that he is prone to overthinking his team selections when it comes to the Champions League.

Fans can still recall the disappointments against Lyon, Tottenham and in the final against Chelsea in 2021, and so images of Jack Grealish in goal during training caused more than a few heart palpitations among supporters. 

While fans took the photos of a diving Grealish – who seemed to struggle against his team-mates’ firepower – in jest, it quickly became a running joke that here was Guardiola’s latest twist.

Only a few hours earlier had Guardiola himself acknowledged the tension that surrounds his frequency of overthinking, promising that this time will be different.

‘I’m not overthinking it,’ Guardiola said on Tuesday after he had hinted at a tweak for the semi-final second leg against Real Madrid. ‘Don’t worry. It’s nothing different from what we’ve done, just more fluid in attack and play a bit better.’ 

Jack Grealish decided to swap attack for goalkeeping during Manchester City training

The left winger was less-than-convincing and won’t be putting any fear into Ederson

Fans joked that Grealish in goal was to be Pep Guardiola’s latest experiment

City fans were able to see the funny side, joking that Ederson is going to start on left wing

That tweak certainly won’t be Grealish in goal, but the winger was among many players in high spirits ahead of a finely poised Champions League semi-final second leg.

City are chasing a famous Treble win this campaign with the Premier League title now close, a chance for a Champions League final appearance in touching distance and the FA Cup final to follow. 

Europe is the one that has continued to escape them since Guardiola arrived – tasked with winning this competition after two successes with Barcelona. 

But should City fail to come out on top after a 1-1 first leg in Spain, Guardiola believes there is no harm done to his ‘legacy’ as a manager. 

‘The legacy is that we’ve had one hell of a time and for many years they will remember this generation of players,’ Guardiola said.

‘My legacy is already exceptional. For years we have scored lots of goals and conceded very few, we’ve won lots of things and won very well.

‘People should remember that. It would be a good book. Whether or not they will remember.’

City more than held their own in the first leg, in which Kevin De Bruyne equalised to level the tie at 1-1 and leave it all to play for at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday night.

‘For the owners, for the amount of money they’ve pumped in and the investment, we owe it to them,’ defender Kyle Walker said. 

Spirits are high in Man City’s camp as their pursuit of a famous Treble continues this week

Erling Haaland (back) struggled in the semi-final first leg and will be out to make up for that

Guardiola showed a neat touch during the session as he plays keepy-ups with one of the balls

Guardiola (right) hinted at a tweak to his team from the first leg in order to have more control

‘It’s big to every one of us in that dressing room. We’ve gone through rough moments and hopefully this will be the icing on the cake, to make history and put this club on the Champions League map. It’s a massive week for the club.’

On the other side is defending champions Real Madrid, a team brimming with Champions League-winning pedigree. 

‘We’re eager to get going. We need to enjoy it, live every minute,’ Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric said. ‘All the titles speak for themselves. We’ve created a dynasty. You have this in your head, it gives you extra motivation.

‘We feel comfortable in these kind of matches. The history of the club obliges you to give the maximum in this competition. I’m proud of what we’ve done.’

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