Manchester City goalkeeper Stefan Ortega Moreno has been credited by Rodri as being the architect behind his goal against Crvena zvezda in the Champions League.
The Spanish defensive midfielder put the icing on the cake on Tuesday night as the reigning European champions battled back from being a goal behind at the half-time interval to beat the Serbian club 3-1 on matchday one of the group stage.
Rodri’s sumptuous solo effort followed a brace from Julian Alvarez, with the Argentine bringing the scores level within one minute of the restart following the break at the Etihad Stadium.
However, it was that half-time pause in action that would ultimately lead to Rodri’s goal in the second-half, after the Spain international revealed that a message given to him by back-up goalkeeper Stefan Ortega uncovered a flaw in Omri Glazer’s game between the Zvezda sticks.
Speaking after the contest on the subject of his goal, Rodri explained, “I turned at that moment and I looked for the far corner. Sometimes you don’t have to shoot strong.”
Rodri continued by revealing, “Stefan (Ortega Moreno) told me at half-time that their goalkeeper was paying attention to the ball in the air, and not down or by the sides of the goal, so good advice!”
Providing goals and assists in this Manchester City team is an element of Rodri’s game that he so desperately wants to improve on, having already mastered the art of being the mainstay defensive midfielder in the club’s system.
“It’s (goals) something that becomes natural on a player. It’s not my role, but the way they defended us, they did good in the area. It’s something I’m trying to work on and grow even though it is not my biggest quality but I can help the team in some moments. Not just goals but also assists.”
Rodri continued, “I think it was a tough game. We could have scored three or four goals in the first half but we were not clinical enough. In the first chance they had they scored, sometimes football is like this.
“I think the most important part of this game is to arrive at half time, talk to the guys and say keep calm, don’t panic. Let’s keep doing our job and in the end we scored three goals, Julian was unbelievable. It was a complete game in all the terms.”
Manchester City and Rodri’s hectic fixture schedule is showing no signs of letting up any time soon, as they play hosts to Nottingham Forest at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday afternoon, before opening up their Carabao Cup campaign with a trip to St James’ Park to face Newcastle.
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