City were eliminated from the quarter-finals last season at the hands of Olympique Lyonnais, to become the fourth consecutive time that they failed to pass this stage.
“I feel responsible for that,” the Spanish coach told a press conference on Tuesday. I didn’t manage to lead the club and the players who fought so much. The reality is that every team and coach must have high expectations, but the reality is that we did not provide the required level. I feel sorry for the players, but this is a new opportunity and we will start again.
City began their Premier League career in a shaky way, losing 5-2 at home to Leicester City and then drawing 1-1 with Leeds United, but Guardiola’s team regained some momentum with a 1-0 victory over Arsenal at the start of this week.
The Spanish coach expects another difficult test against the Portuguese champion, and said: Porto is one of the strongest teams in Portugal, and the team’s mentality is to win every week. We have to be more stable in level and improve in some aspects. The reality is that winning our home matches is of utmost importance in order to qualify.
Kevin de Bruyne, Gabriel Jesus, Emeric LaPorte and Benjamin Mendy will miss the City four due to injury, but full-back Oleksandr Zenchenko has recovered from a muscle problem.
“We expect Kevin and Emerick to return in the next few weeks,” Guardiola said. Gabriel may be absent for some time and we hope that they will return soon.