Manchester City will face Inter Milan in the showpiece event on 10 June.
Pep Guardiola has said Manchester City being labelled as favourites for the Champions League final is the ‘worst that can happen’.
The ex-Barcelona manager was speaking after his side beat Real Madrid 4-0 in the second leg of the semi-final on Wednesday, to ensure they’ll play Inter Milan in Istanbul next month. Given Inter are third in Serie A, 17 points of newly crowned champions Napoli, and made it to the final after a kind run of fixtures against Porto, Benfica and AC Milan, City are heavy favourites for the final.
However, Guardiola is wary of the title and thinks it will be more difficult for his side if they are expected to comfortably beat Inter.
“This team has one incredible detail, they are so humble,” Guardiola said after Wednesday’s win over Real. “Every player, doesn’t matter the competition, he takes [the game] seriously because they are so humble.
“I hate arrogance in sport and I hate when you are something you are not. These guys have done this thing for many years. They got their rewards and they deserve it.
“An Italian team, I would say a final against an Italian team they will say we are favourites – that is the worst that can happen. We have time to prepare and now we just focus on Chelsea [on Sunday]. We have to try to close it as soon as possible to prepare for Inter MIlan.”
Pushed further on being viewed as favourites, Guardiola said: “That is so difficult. But [if] you listen to the favourite [tag] and believe you are… if you believe you are something special, you are not.
“I said to the players, you only do better because sometimes you kick the ball better than the opponents. That doesn’t make you special at all. We are living that because at the start of the season we are favourites. It is not easy to handle but if it happens it is maybe because this side deserve it for what they have done in the past.
“It is so difficult in football in the modern era to do what these guys have done so far. They play with desire. We spoke just before going to the pitch and said ‘do you want to play against Inter, yeah or no?. If you play 90 minutes thinking you want to play Inter you will beat Real Madrid’.”