Pep Guardiola congratulated his Manchester City side on Tuesday after they overcame a tough test to earn a 2-0 win over Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League.
City were not at their fluent best against the Ukrainians in their Group F tie at the Etihad Stadium, but they managed to eke out a win thanks to second-half goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling.
After the match Guardiola praised the application of his side in the face of a different kind of challenge.
“We made an extraordinary performance, especially in the second half. They play short passes, they make amazing build-up, they are a machine. They are well organised defensively,” he said.
“So, a lot of credit (for) our victory. We faced a team who demand a lot to beat them. It was a big victory for us.”
Shakhtar Donetsk coach Paulo Fonseca: "I'm unhappy because we lost, but we have to be proud of the way we played." pic.twitter.com/7WcaQJjyAQ
— City Watch (@City_Watch) September 26, 2017
Frustrated by the visitors in the first half, City eventually edged ahead three minutes after the break through De Bruyne before Sergio Aguero squandered the chance to equal the club’s goalscoring record when he saw his penalty saved. Sterling, on as a sub secured the points with a last-minute strike.
“We didn’t concede almost anything but it is a tough, tough, tough team to play, Shakhtar Donetsk, always,” added Guardiola.
“In the last eight or 10 years they were always in the Champions League. They sometimes arrive in the quarter-finals. It is always complicated to play against them, that is why I am so satisfied.”