Ilkay Gundogan hands Manchester City Champions League final fitness boost

The midfielder was an unused substitute against Everton on Sunday.
Ilkay Gundogan hands Manchester City Champions League final fitness boost

By Andy Hampson, PA

Ilkay Gundogan has declared himself fully fit ahead of the Champions League final.

The midfielder was an unused substitute in Manchester City’s final Premier League game of the season against Everton on Sunday after injuring his knee in the previous fixture at Brighton.

The 30-year-old insists there are no issues and he is ready to play a part against Chelsea in Porto on Saturday.

Gundogan (right) suffered a knee injury in last week's defeat at Brighton
Gundogan (right) suffered a knee injury in last week’s defeat at Brighton (Mike Hewitt/PA)

Gundogan said: “I am all right. I was a bit more cautious in the Brighton game because of the knock on my knee.

“I started to feel all the muscles around a bit and I didn’t want to pull anything, that’s why we were cautious. I didn’t miss any training sessions after that game so I am feeling good.”

Gundogan is the only member of the City squad to have played in a Champions League final previously, having been in the Borussia Dortmund side beaten by Bayern Munich in 2013.

He does not feel that has any relevance now and is preparing for the upcoming encounter as the biggest game of his career.

“I don’t know if I want to remember that day because we were not able to win it,” said Gundogan, who scored a penalty in that loss at Wembley. “But jokes aside it was a great achievement for that young Dortmund side to get into the final.

Gundogan scored but ended on the losing side in 2013
Gundogan scored but ended on the losing side in 2013 (Martin Rickett/PA)

“It just felt like we were on a run, we were not thinking much about anything – we just went out on the pitch to play, to have fun, to win. There was not much else.

“That’s why I don’t really know what the feeling should be like. Everyone is different.

“There are some maybe thinking a lot about the final and maybe some who are able to put it to one side.

“At the end of the day, I feel it is just about everyone being prepared. Everyone knows himself the best.

“It is probably the biggest game of all of our lives, of all our careers, so far and we will try everything that is possible to be able to lift the trophy at the end of the 90 minutes.”

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