Magical timing gave Manchester City its first chance

(Manchester City-Atletico Madrid 1-0) The home side tripped over a wall of Atletico Madrid players – until substitute Phil Foden (21) served and Kevin De Bruyne (30) scored the winner.

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The winning goal at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester came after 70 minutes of frustration for the home team’s fans and players. And City manager Pep Guardiola is no exception, but he is very pleased with the result:

– Very! We played against a top team that was difficult to deal with, but it’s a good result. We had chances to score more, Guardiola concluded for BT Sport.

Not a single goal was created during the first half, and Atlético Madrid were just as compact defensively as expected. Manchester City’s players also don’t seem to have the tools needed to break down Diego Simeone’s defensive wall.

Granted, it looked better in the second half, but Ilkay Gündogan, De Bruyne and Aymeric Laporte took chances.

CELEBRATION MOIST: Pep Guardiola uses a water bottle to celebrate Kevin De Bruyne’s long-awaited goal.

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Then Guardiola made three changes, and in came Jack Grealish, Gabriel Jesus and at least 21-year-old Foden.

Two minutes later the payoff came, and it was the first time Foden had hit the ball.

He fed a beautiful tunnel pass onto the pitch to De Bruyne who had timed the race perfectly before slotting the ball into the wall of the net to the right of Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak.

– I did the races, and Phil found me perfect. I had to stay focused, and luckily I managed to do it,” match winner De Bruyne told BT Sport.

THANK YOU SERVANT: Kevin De Bruyne gave Phil Foden some love after the game finished in Manchester.

Does not create anything

– That’s really hard. They played with almost five men at the back, and with five in midfield, he added.

Manchester City had two shots on goal throughout the match, and Atlético Madrid finished zero. The xG stats (goal expectations based on odds) for the away team is 0.00…

No more goals than De Bruynes, but Foden has impressed with the exquisite detail that helped Manchester City get a useful starting point before meeting back in the Spanish capital in eight days.

Then Atlético Madrid MUST try to score. Meanwhile, Manchester City will be visited by Liverpool in a very important league game. Liverpool warmed up for the big game by winning comfortably 3-1 away against Benfica this evening.

Henrietta Fairbank

"Amateur analyst. Zombie geek. Hardcore troublemaker. Internet expert. Incurable twitter fanatic."

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