Tonight will go down in history as the night that Manchester City arrived on the European stage. The night that Manchester City not just beat, but dominated, the best team in the world. It was an absolutely superb performance from the Blues from start to finish, a performance that will have made every single one of City’s fans proud. Let’s take a look at how the individual players performed.
Willy Caballero – 7
It’s a testament to how well City played that Willy didn’t have all that much to do. His distribution was good in general, and apart from the odd misplaced pass, it was an all round good performance from the Argentine stopper. Can’t be blamed for Barcelona’s goal.
Pablo Zabaleta – 7
I have to admit, I was incredibly worried when I saw Zabaleta’s name on the team sheet, fearing that Neymar would tear him to shreds. He looked slightly uncomfortable and off the pace in the first half, but to his credit, grew into the game, and kept his Brazilian opponent relatively quiet.
Nicolas Otamendi – 6
The lowest scoring player of the night, unfortunately. I’ve been a fan of his since Pep came in, but this was a performance of the Otamendi of last season. He went to ground far too early on a number of occasions, and was almost made to pay for it, had Andre Gomes’ shot been an inch or two lower. No harm done though, and hopefully he will return to form at the weekend.
John Stones – 8
An excellent performance from Stones, showing real maturity against the toughest of opponents. He made two vital blocks from Suarez when City were 1-0 down, and he should be delighted with the role that he played in the win.
Aleksandar Kolarov – 7
Like Zabaleta, I feared for Kolarov, especially against the world’s best player. Thankfully, I was proven wrong, as the Serbian full-back turned in a solid performance. Well played, Aleks.
Fernandinho – 7.5
Taken off after 60 minutes through injury, I thought Fernandinho did well during his time on the pitch. He looked slightly sloppy in position at times, but his work-rate was typically superb, and he played a huge part in nullifying Barcelona’s attack.
Ilkay Gundogan – 9 (Man of the Match)
Another superb performance from Ilkay. Two goals against the best team in the world to add to his two at the weekend. He seems to have that Lampard-esque knack of arriving into the box at the perfect time. Aside from his goals, he was crucial alongside Fernandinho in breaking up the play, showing great energy and desire throughout. After an understandably slow start to life at the club, we are beginning to see the best of Gundogan. Brilliant player.
David Silva – 7.5
A very good performance from El Mago, showcasing not just his talent on the ball, but also his new-found energy levels. Silva put in a real shift both in the middle and out wide, a very pleasing performance from the Spaniard.
Kevin De Bruyne – 8.5
Struggled to impose himself on the game in the first half and cut an isolated figure out wide. However, Pep’s decision to move him central paid dividends, as he turned in a superb second-half performance which included a beautiful free-kick which gave the Blues the lead.
Raheem Sterling – 8
Another impressive performance from Raheem, who was taken off after 70 minutes. He was wrongly booked for diving early on, when he should have won a penalty. His pass to Gundogan for our equaliser was perfectly weighted, and he was a constant thorn in Barcelona’s left side.
Sergio Aguero – 8
No goals for Sergio today, but I think we can find it in our hearts to forgive him. He chased down every loose ball, something which will have thrilled Pep, and led to our first goal. He was unlucky not to score the third goal, but Kun will be pleased with two assists and a fantastic win.
Fernando – 7
Replaced the injured Fernandinho on the hour mark and you could hardly tell the difference, which is the biggest compliment I can pay him. Broke up the play well and showed good energy in the middle.
Jesus Navas – 7.5
He replaced Raheem Sterling after 70 minutes, and did a fine job down the right-hand side, putting in the delicious cross which led to City’s third goal. He has been very impressive recently.
Nolito – N/A
Came on in the 88th minute for De Bruyne, so no time to mark.
Agree or disagree with these ratings? Have your say!
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