Match Report

Rampant City coast to victory in Brugge

WHAT A MOMENT: Palmer clearly enjoyed his first UCL goal!
Champions League
Champions League
Tue 19 Oct
1
5
Hans Vanaken 
(81’)
João Cancelo 
(30’), 
Riyad Mahrez 
(43’, 84’), 
Kyle Walker 
(53’), 
Cole Palmer 
(67’)
View highlights
City bounced back from the Group A loss to Paris Saint-Germain with a superb performance against Club Brugge.

City were magnificent from start to finish, with the 5-1 victory - if anything - flattering the hosts.

The scoreline equalled our winning margin in a Champions League away game, having beaten Basel and Feyenoord 4-0 - though this is the first time we’ve hit five goals away from home in the Champions League proper.

Joao Cancelo opened the scoring, with Riyad Mahrez doubling the lead before the break.

Kyle Walker and Cole Palmer added further strikes in the second-half before Brugge pulled back a barely deserved consolation.

Mahrez then bagged his second of the night a few minutes later to restore order.

The only slight criticism, if there was any, was the margin of victory wasn't even greater.

What happened?

City set about their task straight from kick-off and were soon swarming over the Belgians.

Brugge couldn’t handle the trickery and vision of Jack Grealish, Bernardo and Phil Foden in what was an opening battering by the Premier League champions and the writing was on the wall for the hosts who were fortunate to see the offside flag raised after Grealish and Rodrigo both had goals disallowed.

It was total dominance as City’s pressure continued to pin Brugge back and the only surprise was they managed to get to the halfway mark before they finally conceded.

Inevitably, it was the outstanding Foden who finally  unpicked the lock with a 40-yard lofted pass finding the run of Cancelo who chested the ball down before calmly poking the ball through Simon Mignolet’s legs.

Brugge were looking more ragged by the minute, with several forceful challenges leaving Bernardo, Grealish, Foden and De Bruyne on the turf.

Two minutes before the break, City got the second goal their dominance thoroughly deserved as De Bruyne stumbled over the ball on the edge of the box and Mahrez looked to take on the opportunity before being hacked down by Nsoko for a clear penalty.

Mahrez calmly sent Mignolet the wrong way to put City in total command.

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There was more of the same after the re-start.

Mahrez was having a field day in the right flank and if you allow a player with his technique too much time and space, it will end badly!

For City's third of the evening, Mahrez found De Bruyne and his delightfully deft prod sent Kyle Walker clear in the box and his low angled shot found the bottom left corner.

Champagne football.

Pep Guardiola took the wise decision to rest some tiring legs and it was two of the subs who combined superbly to put City 4-0 up on 67 minutes.

Raheem Sterling scampered down the left flank, looked up and spotted Cole Palmer's run down the middle. picked him out and the youngster controlled the ball before curling it into the left corner of the net - both had been on the pitch for just two minutes.

It was unselfish play by Sterling and yet another example of Palmer's growing reputation.

Brugge managed to keep their record of scoring in every game this season by pulling one back through Hans Vanaken - but a couple of minutes later, Fernandinho sent Mahrez clear to make it 5-1.

classy cancelo

Joao Cancelo is becoming one of the best full-backs in world football with his elegant, seemingly effortless ability that all comes so easily to him.

His ability to support the forwards and provide another attacking option gives City's attack a dimension few other clubs have.

He creates goals, scores them and he defends pretty well, too.

His is maturing into a wonderful footballer.

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Champions League

Man City

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Brugge

What it means...

City have six points from three games and top the group until PSG and RB Leipzig play later this evening.

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What's next?

City travel to the south coast on Saturday to take on Brighton & Hove Albion at the Amex Stadium.

Kick-off is 5.30pm and the game will be screened live on Sky Sports, and build-up gets underway on mancity.com and the app with Matchday Live from 16.30.

You can also follow minute-by-minute coverage of the game via our Matchday Centre which begins two hours ahead of kick-off.

Keep across our official app and website to follow the action as it unfolds, and a comprehensive match report plus reaction from Pep Guardiola and players will follow after the full-time whistle.

There will also brief highlights to follow at 21:15, extended highlights at midnight and a full match replay on CITY+, also from midnight.

Star Man

Despite the level of the performance as a team, it's still an easy decision to name Foden as the outstanding player.

PEP REACTION

"It was a great performance apart from the last 10 minutes of the first half and the last 10 minutes of the second.

"We played really good, had total control, creating chances and I am so satisfied with the way we played.

"Normally when you win that way it is easy, but I know what they did here against PSG and won in Leipzig - one of the toughest teams in Germany so I’m not going to underestimate their team - what we have done we thoroughly deserve it."

LINE-UPS

City: Ederson, Walker, Cancelo, Dias (c), Laporte Ake 57), Rodrigo (Fernandinho 71), De Bruyne (Palmer 65), Bernardo (Gundogan), Grealish, Mahrez, Foden (65)

Substitutes: Steffen, Carson, Jesus,  Zinchenko

Club Brugge: Mignolet, Mata, Hendry, Nsoki (Mechele 79)l, Sobol, Balanta (Mbamba-Muanda 67), Rits (Vormer 56), Vanaken, Sowah (van der Brempt 56), Lang, De Ketelaere

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