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Would winning the Champions League be the yardstick for success for Pep Guardiola at Man City?

4:41 AM GMT+4 10/03/2019
Pep Guardiola Manchester City 2018-19
Pep Guardiola has not reached the final of the Champions League since 2011, a record he would like to overturn with City...
With a 3-2 result in their favour over FC Schalke in the first leg, it is Manchester City who hold all the cards to go through to the UEFA Champions League quarter finals. But, is that enough for Pep Guardiola and co? Definitely not.

Arguably one of the greatest managers in the modern era, Guardiola was brought into the club to deliver the sole thing that has eluded City far - European success. The powers that be at Manchester City have only further endowed the Spaniard with all the tools required and it will be imperative for the Sky Blues to go all the way and lift the famous old trophy at the third time of asking under the 'Guardiola era'.

Starting off his managerial career at FC Barcelona, the 48-year-old won two Champions League titles in four seasons (2008-09 and 2010-11). Interestingly, Guardiola has not led a team to the Champions League final since. Even during his three years at Bayern Munich, his team went out at the semifinals thrice.

After taking up the Manchester City job in 2016, Guardiola has not even reached the semifinal yet. It was AS Monaco who knocked City out in the Round of 16 in 2016-17 while fellow English club Liverpool had the better of the Mancunian outfit in the quarter finals last season.

Since coming onto the shores of England, Guardiola has not shyed away of splurging big money in the transfer market. Almost €600 million has been spent on new players in the past six windows as there is no denying Guardiola is creating an all-conquering side domestically.

The Spaniard converted City into a force that struck fear in the hearts of all its opponents. In that season, the side from Manchester broke the record for most consecutive wins (18), most goals scored (106), most wins (32), most points (100), most away wins (16), most away points (50), highest goal difference (+79) and most points ahead of second placed team (19). 

While the first two seasons might have been hard to toggle between regaining domestic supremacy and European progression, the owners and fans of City will expect more from Guardiola now.

Schalke on Tuesday night will be yet another hurdle in City's quest to reach the European pinnacle. A 60.3 per cent win record as a manager in Europe's elite competition speaks volumes of Guardiola's pedigree and class. The Champions League title in the hands of Pep Guardiola at the end of the season will define his success at Manchester City in a different level altogether.