Erling Haaland came back to haunt his former club with a stunning goal to cap a late turnaround for Pep Guardiola’s side against Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium.
In a low-key first half, Manchester City saw plenty of the ball but could not do anything with it, with Jack Grealish in particular wasteful and Erling Haaland unable to find any space in the Dortmund defence. Heading into the break at 0-0, it was actually Dortmund that had come closest, with the hosts having not even managed a shot on target.
Dortmund were happy to hit the Cityzens on the break, which consistently threatened to undo Pep Guardiola’s side. However, it was through a set piece that the visitors eventually took the lead. Teenage starlet Jude Bellingham lost former teammates Haaland and Manuel Akanji to nod home a Marco Reus delivery from the left hand side after the initial corner from the right was cleared, sending the German side into a surprise lead.
City pushed for an equaliser, with Erling Haaland hitting the outside of the post from a tight angle, but it took a thunderbolt from John Stones to drag the Cityzens back into the game with their first shot on target.
Just moments later, though, they were ahead with their second. A beautiful outside-of-the-boot assist from Joao Cancelo was met by a flying Erling Haaland, who left the goalkeeper with no chance and sealed the comeback for Pep Guardiola’s side, taking them to six points in the group in the process.
Here’s how 101 rated the players.
GK: Ederson - 6
Performed his sweeper keeper duties well. Could do nothing about the Dortmund goal.
RB: John Stones - 6
Never looks comfortable at right back, and only highlights the importance of Kyle Walker to this City side. Redeemed himself with a thunderbolt of a strike to level the game.
CB: Manuel Akanji - 5
Lost Bellingham for the Dortmund goal, and struggled against his former club’s counterattacks.
CB: Nathan Ake - 6
Better than his partner, but looks well below the level of first-choice options.
LB: Joao Cancelo - 7
Struggled for much of the game but provided an outrageous cross for the winner, which was met by an equally impudent finish.
CM: Kevin De Bruyne - 7
Continued to look a cut above others in sky blue, but his usual passes didn’t come off and his frustration was visible.
CM: Rodri - 6
Broke up play well, and kept the ball moving at the base of the Manchester City midfield.
CM: Ilkay Gundogan - 5
Had a quiet night against his former side, and was taken off after an hour.
RW: Riyad Mahrez - 5
Restored to the starting lineup but did little to suggest he will remain there, and was taken off after an hour.
ST: Erling Haaland - 7
Had nothing to do almost all game, but did exactly what he always does, producing a stunning finish to hand them all three points.
LW: Jack Grealish - 4
Saw plenty of the ball but was far too predictable with it. Could probably have been marked by the Dortmund defenders with their eyes closed.
Bernardo Silva - 6
Came on and was tidy without directly influencing the scoring.
Phil Foden - 5
Came on for Grealish and had largely the same amount of luck as his compatriot.
Julian Alvarez - 6
Was energetic and showed great promise. Saw one strike blocked and could yet be Pep Guardiola’s joker in the deck this season.
Kalvin Phillips - N/A
Came on solely for stoppage time.
GK: Alexander Meyer - 5
Had very little to do but conceded with the first shot on target and will feel as though he should have done far better.
RB: Thomas Meunier - 7
A brilliant engine to get up and down the pitch all night. Did well to keep Grealish and then Foden quiet.
CB: Niklas Sule - 7
Worked well with Hummels to keep City quiet for most of the game.
CB: Mats Hummels - 8
May now be beyond his prime but used his experience brilliantly to keep Haaland quiet. So nearly managed to do so for 90 minutes.
LB: Raphael Guerreiro - 6
The quietest of the Dortmund defenders in both boxes, he was not at his rampaging best.
CM: Salih Ozcan - 8
Worked brilliantly to suffocate the Manchester City midfield and was tidy in possession.
CM: Emre Can - 7
A solid return to England for Can in central midfield, breaking up attacks and setting his side away on the break well.
CM: Jude Bellingham - 8
Was the best player on the pitch for Dortmund, and showed brilliant anticipation to nod home the opening goal. Whoever lands him next summer will be very lucky.
RW: Marco Reus - 7
Without getting on the scoresheet, it was his shot that was turned in by Bellingham and he created plenty of chances for his teammates.
ST: Anthony Modeste - 6
Offered a focal point for his side and worked hard.
LW: Giovanni Reyna - 6
The USMNT starlet worked hard out of possession and looked a threat on the break. Hooked after an hour.
Donyell Malen - 6
Came close with a venomous strike and defended well.
Nico Schlotterbeck - 5
Was not his fault necessarily but his arrival, and the change to a back three, threw Dortmund entirely out of sync.
Karim Adeyemi -N/A
Was only on for the final 2 minutes.
Yousef Moukoko -N/A
Was only on for the final 2 minutes.