It was a wild night at the Etihad with 9 goals scored in the first meeting between Manchester City and RB Leipzig. The score was opened early and the streak didn’t stop until the final whistle. In the end, Pep Guardiola’s men deserved the three points.
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Leipzig were keen on possession from the start and there were opportunities to score at either end early in the game. In City’s third defense, RBL earned several early free kicks, one of which was a yellow card for Oleksandr Zinchenko in the 12th minute. None of the set pieces were particularly dangerous, and soon City were back on top of Leipzig.
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Riyadh Mahrez attempted a lovely cross to the back post from a right-wing position that would have found Jack Grealish in front of goal but Nordi Mukiele’s header crossed the line in City’s corner. A corner turned out to be the better chance as Nathan Aké headed past the home keeper from Grealish. Peter Gulacci was just a past effort, which saw the ball hit the underside of the bar and into the back of his net.
On the following drive, City built the lead with the ball and looked to be the more dangerous club. Kevin De Bruyne, making his first start for City this year, appeared to suffer no ill effects from the red card as he picked out players with his signature pass. In the 28th minute, KDB looked for Grealish who made another run at goal, but this time Mukiele’s header found the net for an own goal. City were 2-0 up and looked to be ahead on the night.
In what would become a theme for RB Leipzig, they were able to halve the deficit with just 3 minutes remaining in the opening period. After a wonderful ball in City’s final third, Emil Forsberg sent a cross past Ederson, who found Mukieli. Mukiele’s header back into the six yard box where Christophe Nkunku came home to split Man City’s lead.
It looked as though both teams would go into the locker room with Man City 2-1 in the RBL, but Grealish and KDB created another goal-scoring opportunity for the Blues. Super Jack played the ball to the end line on the left and found KDB at the front of the box. Playing around the conductor again, he passed to Mahrez on the right, who fired into the penalty area, where Ferran Torres was waiting to head the ball. His shot hit Lukas Klostermann’s outstretched arm, which was ruled a penalty by VAR.
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City’s history of penalties, particularly in the Champions League, is cause for concern. But Mahrez stepped into the spot and fired a shot into the top left corner of Gulaci’s net to restore a two-goal lead for Pep’s side. It proved to be a penalty kick before Dutch referee Serdar Gözübüyük blew the whistle for half time.
The second half saw even more goals and it wasn’t long before the action was back. American midfielder Tyler Adams received a yellow card in the 49th minute for fouling Grealish. But just two minutes later, Leipzig hit back with a quick pass from inside their penalty area which ended with Dani Olmo finding Nkunku in the box to head one more past Ederson.
With the score at 3-2, the pressure was back on City and it was clear that RBL would not just walk away. Fortunately for the Etihad faithful, the Sky Blues aren’t done either. Just 5 minutes after Nkunku’s second goal, Grealish took advantage of a slow defensive reaction to get into the area and fired a right-footed shot against Leipzig to score City’s 4th goal.
Shortly after Grealish’s attack, former City player Angelinho had his name written in Gözübüyük’s book with a yellow card after De Bruyne withdrew to stop City’s potential break. After the booking, City decided on Ilkay Gündogan, Fernandinho and Phil. Foden and Raheem Sterling in the next 12 minutes of play. Leipzig also made wholesale trades, but one player they left out was Nkunku who completed a hat-trick.
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Nkunku got his third goal of the night in the 73rd minute. A narrow pass from Leipzig sent Nkunku into the penalty area, where he came face to face with Ederson. He was able to curl a shot into the bottom left corner of City’s goal right past the Brazilian netminder’s outstretched hand.
With the game at 4-3 and so far from finishing, City got back to work trying to secure all three points. Sterling was fouled way above Leipzig. And his quick restart was followed by a series of sharp passes from Grealish to Gündogan to Joao Cancelo, who fired a 22-yard shot past Gulaci to put City 5-3 up in the 74th minute.
However, with Leipzig’s proven counter-attacking ability, City cannot be complacent. But in the 79th minute, Angelino pulled another cynical challenge, this time with Cancelo in the middle of the park. He received a second yellow card for his efforts and the ever-tough Red Bulls were suddenly down to 10 men.
Guardiola, making his 300th appearance for Man City, made another substitution in the 81st minute. Gabriel Jesus came on for Grealish, who has produced perhaps his best game to date in a City shirt. The move quickly paid off as Gabi was there in the 85th minute to head the rebound from a Foden corner which was turned back towards goal by Cancelo, then past Aké and finally firing Ruben Diaz straight at Jesus. finish.
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Pep Guardiola now 300 games as #ManCity manager: ✅ 219 won, 36 drawn, 45 lost ⚽️ 731 goals, 245 goals against 10 trophies won, 15 individual awards
After that, City could easily stop the game. Their win, coupled with a shock draw between Club Brugge and Paris Saint-Germain in the other Group A game, left Pep’s side top of the group. Next up in the UCL is a trip to Paris, and defeats to Lionel Messi, Neymar Jr and Kylian Mbappe will give City a serious advantage heading into the knockout stage. The UEFA Champions League is back in action with its final. group stage fixtures this week, with Manchester City hosting RB Leipzig on Tuesday. Manchester City have been impressive this season and dominated this game.
RB Leipzig are currently third in Group A and face an uphill battle this week. Germany parted ways with Jessie Marsh at the weekend and will have to do their best to stand a chance in this game.
Manchester City, on the other hand, are currently top of their group and have been in impressive form this season. Cityzens lost to PSG in their previous Champions League game and will be confident going into this game.
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Manchester City have an excellent record against RB Leipzig and have won the only match between the two teams. RB Leipzig have never been able to win against Manchester City and will be looking to make history this week.
The previous meeting between the two teams took place in September this year and ended in a 6-3 win for Manchester City. RB Leipzig gave a good assessment of themselves on the day but will need to be tougher this game.
Amadou Haidara, Jusuf Poulsen, Dani Olmo and Ilaix Moriba are currently injured and out of action. Willy Orban and Hugo Novoa spent the weekend in quarantine and are unlikely to feature in this game.
Ferran Torres remains Manchester City’s only fitness concern and will not be available for this game. Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden and Jack Gree have recovered from injury and are available for the squad.
Match Report: Manchester City 6 3 Rb Leipzig
RB Leipzig Predicted XI (3-4-3): Peter Gulacci; Lukas Klostermann, Mohamed Simakan, Josko Guardiol; Nordi Mukiele, Tyler Adams, Konrad Laimer, Angelino; Christopher Nkunku, Emil Forsberg, Andre Silva
Manchester City Predicted XI (4-3-3): Zach Stephen; Kyle Walker, Nathan Eyck, John Stones, Oleksandr Zinchenko; Fernandinho, Kevin De Bruyne, Ilkay Gundogan; Riyadh
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