Kevin De Bruyne gives Man City edge over Atletico2 min read
Kevin De Bruyne was the hero as Manchester City overcame Atletico Madrid 1-0 in their Champions League quarter-final first leg at the Etihad Stadium.
The Belgium international struck the only goal 20 minutes from time to hand Pep Guardiola’s side a narrow advantage heading into the second leg at the Wanda Metropolitano next week.
Atletico had frustrated the Premier League leaders for large periods of the contest on Tuesday with a typically stubborn defensive display.
However, their resistance was finally broken when De Bruyne latched onto Phil Foden’s precise throughball, before sliding past Jan Oblak.
Guardiola had overseen victories in each of City’s previous three Champions League matches against Spanish sides.
But despite boasting well over 70 per cent of possession and forcing four corners, the hosts were unable to break down their stubborn opponents before the interval.
City failed to register a single shot on target from six attempts in the first half, with Atletico also making important blocks to deny Joao Cancelo and De Bruyne.
Ilkay Gundogan almost unlocked the Atleti defence, but the skipper was just unable to get Riyad Mahrez’s inviting cross under control.
City continued to carry the greater threat after the restart; Oblak getting down well to keep out De Bruyne’s free-kick, while Aymeric Laporte headed over from a Mahrez corner.
Guardiola introduced Jack Grealish, Gabriel Jesus and Foden in a bid to find an elusive opening goal.
And the latter made an impact within two minutes of stepping onto the field; producing a perfectly timed pass for De Bruyne, who finished clinically with his right foot from inside the penalty area.
The midfielder then had an effort blocked by former City defender Stefan Savic, but his strike was enough to give City the edge.