MX23RW : Monday, February 18 02:59:31
Oct 2, 2018 at 5.55pm UK at ​Rhein-Neckar-Arena
Attendance: 24,851
Hoffenheim
1-2
Man CityManchester City
FT(HT: 1-1)
Aguero (8'), Silva (87')

Guardiola refuses to criticise referee for fear of another touchline ban

The Manchester City boss still has a one-match suspended ban hanging over him.

Pep Guardiola refused to talk about the officials, despite showing frustration with some decisions during Manchester City's last-gasp Champions League victory at Hoffenheim.

The City manager was back on the touchline for his side's second match in Group F after serving a ban for the opener, but he risked further sanction as he remonstrated with referee Damir Skomina during the game.

Guardiola was also seen to shout in the direction of the fourth official as he went over to shake opposite number Julian Nagelsmann's hand following City's 2-1 victory at the Rhein-Neckar-Arena.

Guardiola was first spoken to by Skomina after encroaching on to the field to complain after David Silva was prevented from taking a quick throw-in. He was then incensed late in the game after Leroy Sane was denied a penalty – when the score was still 1-1 – for what seemed a blatant foul by Hoffenheim goalkeeper Oliver Baumann.

Guardiola still has a one-match suspended ban hanging over him after he was punished for his protests during last season's quarter-final defeat against Liverpool.

But asked about the matters after the game, Guardiola said: "I don't want to talk, I don't want to talk, I don't want to talk about officials.

"I want to be with my players in the next games. I know what happened against Monaco at home and against Liverpool last season. I don't want to talk, I don't want to talk, I don't want to talk about officials."

The heat was taken out of the situation to some degree by a late winner from Silva. The Spaniard pounced on a defensive mistake to score three minutes from time.

City had fallen behind to an Ishak Belfodil strike inside the first minute, but Sergio Aguero quickly equalised.

The result secured City's first points of their campaign after defeat to Lyon a fortnight ago.

Guardiola was pleased with the final outcome and hopes the difficult nature of the first two games will prove of long-term benefit.

He said: "After one minute we conceded and it's not easy, but after that we fought, as always, as a team.

"The previous two seasons were not simple, but we qualified with games left and this time it's not going to happen.

"Maybe for the future it's going to be good to live these kind of situation. You cannot go through to quarters, semis, without living these situations.

"That's why today is one of the happiest days I've had in this club because it's going to help us."

Hoffenheim coach Julian Nagelsmann was happy with how his team played, despite going down to late defeat.

Nagelsmann said: "Tactically, I saw a very good performance from my team, who created chances against a world-class team.

"It was really impressive how we came out after half-time. We created some good moments going forward and doing that against a side like Manchester City is something we can build on."


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Paul Pogba and Jose Mourinho pictured during Manchester United's game with Burnley on September 2, 2018
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