LISBON (Reuters) – Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola said his side lost 3-1 to Olympique Lyonnais to exit the Champions League in the quarter-finals because they lacked the perfection needed in Europe’s top competition.
City fell behind to Maxwel Cornet’s strike in a sloppy first half and although they looked like their usual selves after the break and levelled through Kevin de Bruyne, they were downed by two strikes from Moussa Dembele, sandwiched between an unbelievable open-goal miss from Raheem Sterling.
“It is what it is and hopefully one day we’ll bridge this gap,” Guardiola told BT Sport after a fourth successive failure in the Champions League with City.
“We struggled in the first 25 minutes but in the second half we felt free, we were there and I had the feeling we were better than them but you have to be perfect in this competition and we were not.”
Guardiola did not complain about Lyon’s second goal, which survived a VAR review after a potential foul by Dembele on City defender Aymeric Laporte.
“I don’t know, I don’t want to talk about those circumstances because sometimes it seems like I’m complaining or looking for excuses. We are out, I had the feeling we were incredible already, but we made mistakes in the boxes in the key moments.”
Guardiola also rued Sterling’s astonishing miss which would have made it 2-2 and was promptly punished by Dembele’s second goal which was the killer blow.
“That moment sums up this competition, we had to equalise and after we conceded the third goal. That’s this competition, you have to be perfect.
“We created more chances, had more shots, we did everything but unfortunately we are out again.”