Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Manchester City 3-0 Bayern Munich: What Were The Key Talking Points As Pep Guardiola’s Side Storm To A Champions League Romp At The Etihad?

Tom Dunstan in Editorial, UEFA Champions League 12 Apr 2023

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In what was a stunning Champions League display on Tuesday night, Manchester City laid down a heavyweight European marker as they cruised their way to a 3-0 romp against Bayern Munich at the Etihad.

Putting in a performance that would have been heard across Europe, it was Rodri who opened the scoring in the 27th minute as the Spanish midfielder produced a thunderous 30-yard strike.

While many might have felt that Pep Guardiola’s side could face a real first-leg tussle on home soil, the Premier League giants will know that they have one foot firmly in the Champions League semi-finals.

Not looking back after returning from the half-time break as Bernardo Silva and Erling Haaland bagged a quickfire brace, there is no doubt that Tuesday’s display at the Etihad will be remembered among City’s most iconic nights.

Although Bayern Munich might have traveled to Manchester with their sights set on causing a first-leg upset on foreign soil, the German giants instead face a huge amount of scrutiny from back home.

Blown away at the Etihad and knowing that they need a minor European miracle when they return to the Allianz next week, Thomas Tuchel will be hugely frustrated by a major defensive collapse on foreign soil.

On a night when Manchester City stormed their way to a remarkable Champions League romp, we have taken a look at the main talking points.

Manchester City are the Champions League favourites

While Manchester City might still find themselves sat six points adrift of defending their Premier League crown this season, Guardiola’s superstar squad are tipped as a leading contender to get their hands on a maiden European trophy.

Although Tuesday’s hosts might have suffered real Champions League heartbreak against eventual winners Real Madrid last year, the one-time Bayern Munich boss has seen his side find top gear at a crucial time.

Making what was a heavyweight European statement on home soil and knowing that it would take an almighty slip-up if they were to not punch their semi-final ticket, the English champions should find the mood in their camp at a red-hot high.

With Guardiola publicly stating this season that his tenure at the Etihad would not be complete if he failed to hand City its first Champions League trophy, it really feels that 2023 could finally be their year.

Breezing their way to the knockout stage without breaking much of a sweat and enjoying what has been an astonishing flurry in the final third, none of Europe’s elite will be relishing a potential showdown against a free-scoring Manchester City.

Tuchel’s defensive headache

Shocking almost everyone across Europe over the international break as it was announced that Tuchel would be replacing Julian Nagelsmann at the Allianz, the former Chelsea boss has endured a mixed start to life in Munich.

Although Tuchel might have opened his tenure with a crucial 4-2 victory against Bundesliga title rivals Borussia Dortmund on April 1st, the German giants have continued to show some rather glaring defensive issues.

Shockingly crashing out of the DFP Pokal earlier in the month following an infamous 2-1 defeat at home against Freiburg, the 49-year-old will know that is honeymoon period in Munich has quickly come to an end.

With French international defender Dayot Upamecano enduring a real nightmare on Tuesday night, Bayern have now recorded just a single clean sheet from any of their last five appearances across all competitions.

Completely blown away at the Etihad and now seeking what would be a real Champions League miracle next week, Tuchel must find an immediate way to plug Bayern’s incredibly fragile defence.

Another game, another record broken for Haaland

While Haaland might not have stolen the show on Tuesday night, the Norwegian icon is almost breaking a new record every time he takes to the pitch.

Only continuing on what has been a history-making romp since arriving in the Premier League from Borussia Dortmund last summer, the 22-year-old has only cemented his spot as Europe’s most lethal number nine.

Notching City’s third on Tuesday night and already bagging 11 Champions League strikes in his seven appearances, Haaland also finds himself sat in pole position to claim a first European Golden Boot this season.

Setting Europe alight on either side of the World Cup’s winter break, City’s attacking talisman has also scored a staggering 45 goals across all competitions this year – the most that he has produced in a single season of domestic football.

Only going from strength to strength and spearheading a City side that have now bagged 20 goals in their last four appearances at the Etihad, it remains to be seen who can stop Haaland.

Match Report

Manchester City: Emerson, Akanji, Dias, Ake, Stones, Rodri, Silva, De Bruyne, Gundogan, Grealish, Haaland

Subs: Alvarez

Bayern Munich: Sommer, Pavard, Upamecano, De Ligt, Davies, Goretzka, Kimmich, Sane, Musiala, Coman, Gnabry

Subs: Mane, Cancel, Muller

Goals: Rodri (27’), Silva (70’), Haaland (76’)

Yellow Cards: Manchester City: Silva – Bayern Munich: Pavard, Davies

Red Cards: N/A

Referee: Jesus Gil Manzano

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

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