Pep Guardiola knows his Manchester City side will be judged on trophies rather than the fantastic performances they have produced this season, as they closed in on the first silverware of a possible quadruple.
Guardiola’s men claimed a 3-2 win at Bristol City in the second leg of their EFL Cup semi-final tie with the Championship club, securing a 5-3 aggregate victory.
Leroy Sane’s deflected opener and a Sergio Aguero strike four minutes into the second half effectively put the tie to bed, though Marlon Pack and Aden Flint levelled matters on the night before Kevin De Bruyne celebrated his new contract with a late winner.
After a trophy-less first season, a maiden honour in England is in sight for Guardiola, who collected 21 over his stints at Barcelona and Bayern Munich, with Chelsea or Arsenal awaiting in the final on February 25.
And Guardiola accepts trophies are the only thing that will decide how this City side are judged, regardless of the scintillating style of play that has seen them surge 12 points clear at the top of the Premier League.
“We are so happy to be there [in the final]. For everybody involved. It was an amazing game. These kind of games never end until the end,” Guardiola, for whom the game marked his 500th in management, told Sky Sports.
“It [Bristol City’s comeback] is a good lesson for Cardiff [in the FA Cup fourth round] and for the Champions League – play until the 90 minutes.
“We saw what happened after 0-2. We knew if we scored two goals it would be easier.
“Maybe we should have scored three or four goals. In the end, there were one or two minutes left and it was 2-2 – anything can happen.
“We won a lot of games over six or seven months. That belongs to us and nobody can take away what we have done, but all teams are judged by the titles they win.
“Chelsea and Arsenal are strong teams. Anything can happen.”