Gundogan doesn’t think Manchester City would’ve beaten Real Madrid even with Haaland

Real Madrid, Rodrygo Goes (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Rodrygo Goes (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Last season, we saw one iconic game after another. Real Madrid, each time when everyone thought they were “dead and buried”, pulled themselves back to life and won each critical Champions League game that came their way.

First, it was PSG, who conceded three goals in 17 minutes. Then it was Chelsea, who arguably gave Real Madrid the biggest scare, but even that wasn’t enough. After that, though, was something I wouldn’t have imagined in any lifetime.

Real Madrid were down 5-3 on aggregate against Manchester City, and in literally two minutes, Real scored two goals to take the game to extra time. After that, they scored another, and defended so powerfully as a team, putting themselves in the Champions League final, when all odds were against them.

Gundogan, who was the instigator of City’s only goal in the second leg, was asked if things would’ve changed had Haaland been a part of the Manchester City squad. He doesn’t think so.

It’s right, though. It’s not like Manchester City already didn’t have incredible players, it was just that Real Madrid, in that time frame, in those final minutes, just became a force that was much beyond City’s imaginations, which is why they succumbed to the pressure, and that would’ve happened with or without Erling Haaland.

Of course, Haaland would’ve helped them a lot in scoring, but, in all honesty, nothing would’ve been enough. Real Madrid just weren’t going to take no for an answer. They had their eyes set on the big prize, and no player, no team was going to stand in the way.

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Be it Kylian Mbappe, be it Erling Haaland, be it anyone else in the world, the team’s mentality can become too much to overcome if you’re on the opposing side. But, if you’re a Real Madrid player, that same mentality can drive you to places you never thought existed. That’s just the way things go.