August 15, 2022
A blistering opening 45 minutes against Sporting CP

A blistering opening 45 minutes against Sporting CP

Bernardo Silva scored twice as Manchester City made Champions League history with an emphatic 5-0 away win over Sporting CP in the first leg of their last-16 tie.

Riyad Mahrez got them on their way with a simple finish early on before Silva added a second with a thunderous strike before the midway point of the first half.

Phil Foden scored a third shortly after the half-hour mark and Silva got his second before half-time as Pep Guardiola’s side became the first team in Champions League history to lead an away knockout match by four goals at the break.

Raheem Sterling added a superb fifth in the second half, with City’s progress to the quarter-finals all but secured ahead of the return fixture in Manchester next month.

City started at a blistering pace and went ahead in the seventh minute, Mahrez slotting in Kevin De Bruyne’s pull-back after Antonio Adan had parried Foden’s effort.

John Stones headed wide soon after, yet City doubled their advantage after 17 minutes when Silva crashed a sumptuous half-volley in off the crossbar from 10 yards.

City’s dominance heralded a third goal in the 32nd minute, Foden stroking in from close range after Mahrez’s low cross had squeezed past two Sporting defenders.

They made it 4-0 before the break when Silva’s strike from Sterling’s pull-back was diverted past Adan by the unfortunate Goncalo Bernardo Inacio.

Silva saw a header ruled out for offside shortly after the interval, yet they added a fifth in the 58th minute courtesy of Sterling’s wonderful curled strike from 20 yards.

What does it mean? City blow hosts away

City were utterly electric in the opening 45 minutes, effectively ending the tie with a game and a half remaining thanks to some ruthless finishing.

They cooled off somewhat in the second period, although Sterling’s glorious strike meant they became the 14th team to score 200 goals in the Champions League. It took them 97 games to reach that milestone – fewer than any of the other 13 teams to do it in the competition.

Sterling’s landmark goal

Sterling brought up his 150th club goal with a wonderful strike after the break, while the England international also left Portugal with an assist after teeing up Silva’s second goal.

Poor Porro

Pedro Porro did not enjoy the most fruitful of outings against his parent club, the Spaniard losing possession a joint game-high 19 times, while he failed to have a shot or play a single key pass.

What’s next?

Both sides are back in domestic action at the weekend, with City hosting Tottenham on Saturday and Sporting at home to Estoril a day later.

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