Raphael Wicky heading to Manchester in good heart
Swiss side are all-but out.
Basel coach Raphael Wicky hopes his side can do themselves justice when they face Manchester City again on Wednesday.
The Swiss champions were thrashed 4-0 by the Premier League leaders when they met in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie last month.
Overturning that deficit in the second leg at the Etihad Stadium seems beyond even the most optimistic Basel supporter but Wicky wants to use the experience in a positive way.
Wicky said of City: “At the moment they’re one of the best two teams in the world. I said that when the draw was made and they’ve confirmed that. They’ve maintained it and even improved their form.
“I’ve talked to my team and said, ‘Look, it’s incredible Basel are still playing in Europe in the last 16 of the Champions League at the start of March.
“We’ve worked hard to be here, we’re in a very difficult position but we have to enjoy this game, give our all and forget the first leg.
“I could say, ‘You have to believe’ but it’d look a bit daft in front of the team. We have to set other targets. It starts 0-0 and we have to treat this as two halves and try to get something from the first half and see what happens.”
Since the last meeting City have won the Carabao Cup and moved even closer to claiming the Premier League crown having opened up a 16-point lead the top.
They have also been installed as favourites for the Champions League and Basel striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel is in no doubt they deserve that status.
The former Norwich player said: “They are doing an amazing job. They are one of the strongest teams in the world. Their objective should be to win the Champions League. They have amazing qualities and they should be able to win all the titles this year.”