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Match Report and Player Ratings: Real Madrid 3-3 Manchester City (UEFA Champions League Quarter-Final first-leg)



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Manchester City and Real Madrid once again traded blows in a thrilling Champions League knockout tie, as the two biggest clubs in Europe battled to a 3-3 draw.

Phil Foden, Josko Gvardiol, and Frederico Valverde all had world class goals of their own, as the two most recent European champions had the most exciting match of the Champions League so far this season.

Manchester City had what looked like the perfect start when Jack Grealish drew a foul on Aurelien Tchouameni in a threatening area just 30 seconds into the match. Real Madrid were slow to set-up after the free-kick was awarded and Bernardo Silva took notice and quickly fired a shot on goal, catching out Real Madrid’s goalkeeper Andriy Lunin.

However, the lead did not last for long and Real Madrid equalised in the 12th minute when Eduardo Camavinga’s long range effort took a massive deflection off of Ruben Dias and left Stefan Ortega helpless. 

Real Madrid then took the lead just moments later when Vinicius put a ball in behind the Manchester City defence on a counter-attack. Rodrygo ran onto it and carried the ball into the box – But the Brazilian’s shot took a slight deflection off of the Manuel Akanji’s leg to prevent Ortega from making a save. 

It was a frantic 15 minutes of football, which has become the norm when these two sides face off.

After the third goal, Manchester City began to slow the game down and attempted to control the game. However, Real Madrid looked dangerous on every counter attack. The first-half ended with Manchester City having more possession, but Real Madrid looking the far better side.

The second-half started off much the same. Real Madrid had a few early chances on the counter, but the defending European champion endured the opening surge and launched their own response.

City’s equaliser came in the 65th minute when Phil Foden found himself with a yard of space on the edge of the box. The 23-year-old midfielder launched a curling effort into the top corner that Lunin had no chance of saving.

The response wasn’t done there. Just five minutes later Josko Gvardiol cut in on his right foot and fired a shot to the far post. The Croatian’s shot curled past a diving Lunin and into the net. After looking out of it for much of the match, Manchester City now led 3-2.

However, Real Madrid would not back down. Vinicius attacked down the left-wing in the 79th minute and dinked a ball to the far side of the box, where Federico Valverde was making a late run and volleyed home a world class strike to the far post. Just like that, Real Madrid made it 3-3 seemingly out of nowhere.

Both teams had chances to snatch the game in the closing moments but the referee finally blew the whistle to signal half-time in a thrilling tie, with the second-leg at the Etihad Stadium next Wednesday.

Here are our player ratings from tonight’s match against Real Madrid!

Player Ratings

Stefan Ortega – 6.5

Wasn’t at fault for any of the goals, but thought his distribution and decision making was off. Often times went long instead of attempting a slightly more difficult pass to an open teammate.

Manuel Akanji – 7

It’s an incredibly difficult task to mark Rodrygo or Vinicius, even more difficult when they’re both line-up up on your side. Kyle Walker would’ve been the preferred option but the Swiss defender held his own.

Ruben Dias – 7.5

Incredibly unlucky on the own goal, and was solid for the most part for the rest of the match.

John Stones – 8

Stones began to look like his old self at times in the second-half despite looking injured for a moment. Even came up big on the defensive end a few times as well. Just need him to stay healthy.

Josko Gvardiol – 9

Once again the Croatian is looking better and better with each performance. Gvardiol is making less and less mistakes and looks more smooth and confident on the ball. Great goal too!

Rodri – 7

Solid Rodri performance. Wasn’t world class and misplayed a few balls but far from a shocker. Still controlled the game. 

Mateo Kovacic -7

He was asked to keep possession and control the game, and for the most part thats what he did. Was anonymous at times, but felt like that was the point. 

Bernardo Silva – 8 (MOTM)

Forever a big match player. Was there wrong decision to swap him and Foden in the first half nevus he was clearly at his best when he was allowed to roam wide and attack. Excellent thinking for the opening goal.

Phil Foden – 8

It was a rough first-half but was arguably the best attacker in the second. Hopefully the late change was a precaution and he won’t miss any time. World Class goal!

Jack Grealish – 7.5

Wasn’t as effective in the second-half but was excellent in the opening 45 minutes. Helped bring any glimpse of control to the first half.

Haaland – 6

Haaland’s build up play has improved, but he needs to work on fighting off stronger centre-backs. Once again Rudiger got the best of him. It’s become a trend. 


Julian Alvarez – N/A