Borussia Monchengladbach boss Andre Schubert felt his team were overwhelmed by Manchester City as they crashed to a 4-0 Champions League defeat at the Etihad Stadium.
The match was pushed back 24 hours after a torrential downpour in Manchester forced a postponement on Tuesday, and it was Schubert and his players left feeling under the weather after being subjected to a Sergio Aguero hat-trick.
Substitute Kelechi Iheanacho furnished the scoreline with late gloss that might have been laid on much thicker but for a fine showing by Borussia goalkeeper Yann Sommer.
Schubert’s men were the only team to avoid defeat in the Bundesliga against Pep Guardiola’s Bayern Munich last season, but that statistic ultimately provided false hope with the Catalan’s current charges in fine fettle.
“We were impressed with the whole [City] team,” Schubert told a post-match news conference.
“We knew what to expect. It wasn’t untypical of City’s game. We knew that they would press us high, particularly in the first 20 to 25 minutes
“When we play against someone like that we have to play to our limits. We have to get everything right and be very courageous.
“We didn’t do that. We didn’t stop the build-up of the opponent and in one-on ones and in defence we didn’t show the quality we have shown in previous campaigns. That’s why Manchester City won so clearly.”
Gladbach players falling short in individual duels was a common theme on what became a chastening outing for the Bundesliga side.
Schubert confirmed the decision to substitute Christoph Kramer before half-time was tactical, after the Germany international was booked for fouling City debutant Ilkay Gundogan and conceding the penalty that led to Aguero and the hosts’ second.
“Manchester City were very clever,” he said. “They tried long balls to get through to our back four and we didn’t deal with these long balls
“Very often in midfield, Chris Kramer was left on his own, one-on-one and that’s why we took him off before half-time.”
Schubert added: “Against the top teams in the Champions League we must play to our limit in terms of running and battling, but also show our qualities in one-on-ones. We didn’t do that.”