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Pep Guardiola looks set to have to contend without Sergio Aguero as the Manchester City boss warned there will be no margin for error in Saturday’s Champions League showdown with Lyon.

The tournament’s revised format means the two clubs will meet in a straight knockout game in Lisbon, having each come through tough two-legged ties to reach the quarter-finals.

While City ousted Real Madrid, Lyon got the better of Juventus, a result which in itself put Guardiola – who all but ruled Aguero out – on high alert.

On the subject of his talismanic striker, who had knee surgery in June, the City boss said: “He is still in Barcelona making a recovery.”

Speaking about the threat of this weekend’s Ligue 1 opponents, Guardiola said: “We saw the games against Juventus, some other games in the French league.

“They are organised, aggressive, so fast. People up front, wing-backs, the quality in the team is something else.

“This is a quarter-final. It won’t be easy.

“The pressure is always there, we try to do our best like the other teams. We saw how tight it was in the last two [Champions League knockout] games, tomorrow will be no exception.

“It’s a final so it’s one game. We’ll try to avoid mistakes so they can’t punish us.”

Guardiola felt the exceptional circumstances imposed by coronavirus have brought the best of out his players and he has even managed to enjoy some wining and dining in Portugal.

He said: “I am proud of how they have been these two or three weeks. Since lockdown they have been incredibly focused.

“We ate good, we drink good wine here in Portugal and now is the time to show ourselves.

“I want to see my team be who they are, do everything they do in their soul, their minds and after that the football will dictate if we deserve it.”

A European triumph would represent a fine way for David Silva to conclude his long and illustrious City career, and Guardiola revealed the midfield maestro is primed and ready.

“Absolutely he is ready,” Guardiola said. “The way he has trained and the mentality, I am really impressed.

“We all know it was a pity his last game in the Etihad was without the people. But he will be back when the people can come back and he will get what he deserves.”

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SportJudges
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