Pep Guardiola has described Manchester City as Champions League “teenagers” and explained they are still on a steep learning curve in the competition.
The Citizens are expected to progress to the quarter-finals after securing a 3-2 lead away at Schalke a team currently 14th on the Bundesliga standings.
Despite their impressive domestic success, City have failed to replicate that run in Europe with their best Champions League finish ending in the semi-final stage.
Speaking ahead of the game, he acknowledged they are still far from reaching the heights of Liverpool and Manchester United, who have eight titles between them in the competition.
“We could win it and make another step. You need 20 or 50 years. We can make a partial step forward but to compare with those kinds of teams, one silverware doesn’t change it. We are teenagers in this competition,” he said via the club site.
“It’s not an excuse – we want to win it, we push ourselves and it will be not good if we don’t go through.
“You have to dream, you have to point as high as possible but there are a lot of teams thinking the same: United, Tottenham are there.
"We are teenagers in this competition."
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) March 11, 2019
“We spoke many times with the players and say you have to have the desire to compete with the best players in Europe.”
Guardiola has warned his team to avoid any form of complacency when they face Schalke at the Etihad on Tuesday night.