Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho has taunted Manchester City ahead of Wednesday night's Champions League clash by saying that Roberto Mancini's men are already out of the tournament.
Mourinho was in typically provocative form on his return to England, reinforcing his emotional attachment to the Premier League, but offering no hope to Mancini as the Italian tries to plot a miraculous escape from Group D.
"Last season Manchester City went out at this stage and I think this season they will be out. They can win the game and the game in Dortmund but it's not enough, so I think they are out early for a second successive time and that must be difficult for them. They can win, but eight points is not enough so City will be the big team that will be out," The Telegraph quoted Mourinho, as saying.
"It's not normal when you are out at the early stage. I speak for myself. If Real Madrid loses the final, the semi or even quarter-final, that's football. But when you are out at the group stage it's hard to accept and understand," he added.
He said that City would have maybe stood a chance of winning had they won against Real in the first game.
"It's a difficult group and we've known a big team or two would be out so every mistake is costly. Every game is a risk. Other teams have easy groups and know from day one they will qualify easy. City, Real Madrid and Borussia want to win but we all knew we could be out in the group, especially because Ajax are taking points," he said.
"That first game [in Madrid] was crucial. If City had won that, the history would be a different history, but we won that match and now we are in a position where we depend only on ourselves and we are in a good condition to qualify. So I repeat I think City will be out," he added. (ANI)