Cole Palmer scored his first Champions League goal as Manchester City put on a superb offensive display to beat Club Brugge 5-1 at John Bradley Stadium.
There was an element of pressure on Pep Guardiola after his 2-0 defeat at PSG last month. Club Brugge started the game one point ahead of the Premier League champions, but Joao Cancello’s strike (0) and Riyad Mahrez’s penalty () gave the visitors a 2-0 lead at the break.
As their dominance continued after the break, Kyle Walker completed another excellent move by City in the 53rd minute with immediate effect from the bench of Palmer’s substitute.
The 19-year-old was on the field for just two minutes before scoring his first Champions League goal in the lower corner (67) with a fine left foot finish.
Club Brugge finally had something to rejoice about when Hans Vanaken found solace in the late (81) but it was City’s only fault that Mahrez added the final fifth to capture his second game (84). A perfect night for Guardiola and his side, as they want to secure top spot in Group A.
How Man City removed Club Brugge …
The city sped out of the block and the low cross from Phil Foden and Cancello avoided Kevin de Bruyne and Jack Grillish, respectively.
Twice through Grillish and Rodry the spectators had the ball behind the net but twice the goal was disallowed – for the first time after Gryllish’s foul on Clinton’s mother, tap on Rodry up for the Florida off of Rydery in Ideal Laport.
Club Brugge: Mignolet (6), Sobol (5), Balanta (5), Nsoki (4), Hendry (5), Lang (5), Sowah (4), Vanaken (6), Rits (5), Clinton Mata (5) , De Ketelaere (5).
Subs: Vormer (5), Van Der Brempt (5), Dost (n / a), Mechele (n / a), Mbamba-Muanda (n / a).
City of people: Ederson ()), Walker (), Din (), Laporte (), Cancello (), Rodri (), Bernardo Silva (), De Bruyne (), Grillish (), Faden () ), Mahrez (9).
Subs: Ake (6), Gundogan (6), Sterling (7), Plamer (8), Fernandinho (6).
Man of the Match: Phil Foden
No concessions were made by Guardiola and many chances went to beg because their final ball disappointed them on numerous occasions, but in the space of half an hour everything changed.
Cancello was released by Foden’s inch-perfect ball, who showed great patience to block Kamal Swah’s challenge before stopping the ball with the feet of goalkeeper Simon Mignellet.
City extended their lead just before the break when Stanley Nosoki’s late long-range Mahrez was beaten inside the penalty area and Algeria International picked Mignolt off the field to send the wrong side and double his side’s advantage at the break.
There was no barrier from City in the second half as Walker put the finishing touches on another fine rice after playing at De Bruyne.
Having scored three goals well for his side has allowed Guardiola to play changes, but their dominance continues with Palmer creating a moment he will never forget.
After teaming up with co-substitute Rahim Sterling, the youngster created a beautiful left-footed finish to beat Mignolet for his second City goal.
Man City team news
Man City have made four changes since their 2-0 win over Burnley over the weekend.
Ederson came back with a goal, Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias and Jack Grillish also came back early.
Meanwhile, Rahim Sterling was on the bench alongside Gabriel Jesus.
Fans of the house finally got some joy when Vanaken returned home from close range in less than 10 minutes, but it only proved to be a consolation and it was also time for the City to respond.
Mahrez ran over Fernandinho’s long ball before giving City a surprise sign of a big win.
Analysis: City could have scored more goals
Sky Sports’ Peter Smith:
“Man City have had that performance. Club Brugge have already shown in the Champions League this season that they have value – but City have beaten them.
“Phil Foden was once again a standout performer for Pep Guardiola but how tempting it was for Cole Palmer to bend his first Champions League goal. First of many, I’m sure.
“City could have scored even more goals in the last minute but they needed that win after the last defeat at PSG.”
Opta Stats: Foden is again bright for the city
Under Pep Guardiola (D7 L11), Manchester City have won 35 of their 53 matches in the UEFA Champions League, with only Bayern Munich (39) winning more matches since taking charge of the Spaniard in 2016-17.
This was the 19th time Pep Guardiola had scored 5+ goals in a UEFA Champions League match, more than twice as many as any other manager (Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson, 8).
Club Brugge have failed to win any of their last 13 matches against the English team in Europe (D3 L10) since beating Chelsea at home in the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1995 – they have conceded 35 goals in those 13 matches.
Phil Foden has six goals and six assists in the UEFA Champions League for Manchester City. Lionel Messi (14 – 9 goals and 5 assists) is the only player to score more goals and assists in the competition before scoring 22 goals under Pep Guardiola.
What’s next for Man City?
Brighton will face Manchester City in the Premier League on Saturday; 5.30pm, live on Sky Sports.
Their next Champions League assignment is against Club Brugge at Etihad Stadium in November; Kick-off at 8 p.m.