MANCHESTER CITY 1:0 ATL. MADRID; KEVIN DE BRUYNE GIVES CITY THE UPPER HAND.
Phil Foden made an instant impact off the bench, providing the assist for Kevin De Bruyne as Manchester City edged out a closely-fought 1-0 win over Atlético Madrid in their UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg.
Having already defeated the red side of Manchester, Atlético had their sights firmly set on Pep Guardiola’s men, who stood in the way of them reaching their first UEFA Champions League semi-final since the 2016/17 campaign. However, Manchester City also had a point to prove, after they fell at the final hurdle against Chelsea in this competition last season. The opening 20 minutes was a predictable affair, with City dominating the ball but failing to penetrate the formidably organised Atlético Madrid defence. Despite being comfortable at the back, the visitors posed no attacking threat, failing to attempt a single shot in the first half of a Champions League game for the first time since data began back in 2003/04.
The closest the hosts came to opening the scoring was a De Bruyne penalty appeal that was swiftly turned down by referee István Kovács after he was barged off the ball by Felipe, leaving the scores level at HT. Antoine Griezmann almost got Atlético off to the perfect start after the break, sailing past the City backline before İlkay Gündoğan heroically forced the Frenchman into an error. De Bruyne forced Jan Oblak into his first save of the night just shy of the hour mark, getting down well to turn his free-kick away from danger.
Aymeric Laporte spurned a great chance when he rose highest from a corner, turning his header over the bar. Substitute Foden provided the magic moment for the hosts after only being on the pitch for a minute, slipping De Bruyne through on goal, who placed the ball into the bottom corner to make it 1-0. De Bruyne should have put his side even further ahead 10 minutes from time, seeing his driven effort turned off the line by Felipe. Atlético remained content to sit deep and defend, keeping out City for the remainder of the game, leaving themselves only a goal behind for the second leg at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium.