Real Madrid 1-2 Manchester City
Manchester City came from behind to grab a deserved 2-1 victory at Real Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 encounter.
After Isco had given Real the lead, Gabriel Jesus equalised with 12 minutes left before the outstanding Kevin De Bruyne netted the winner on the night from the penalty spot.
City made the livelier start to the game and Bernardo Silva’s early effort was blocked by Dani Carvajal.
It was not until the 21st minute that the first clear-cut opening was created though, De Bruyne finding Jesus whose right-footed effort was saved by Real’s former Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.
Pep Guardiola’s team edged a cagey first period and De Bruyne fired a shot over the bar after being set up by Riyad Mahrez while Real’s only opening in the first 45 minutes ended with Ederson keeping out Karim Benzema’s header.
City suffered a major blow in the 33rd minute though when Aymeric Laporte, who only returned to action in January after a five-month injury lay-off, had to hobble off the pitch and be replaced by Fernandinho.
Just before half time Jesus’ volley was almost sliced into his own net by Sergio Ramos but the first half ended goalless.
After the restart Mahrez curled a shot narrowly off target but it was the La Liga side that took the lead in the 60th minute when Isco slotted the ball past Ederson after sloppy City had gifted the home side possession.
The goal lifted Zidane’s side and Ederson did well to gather Fede Valverde’s cross with Benzema lurking while Ramos’ deflected shot almost found the back of the net after good play by Isco.
However, in the 78th minute, De Bruyne’s cross was headed home by Jesus although Courtois should have kept it out.
Just five minutes later De Bruyne scored with his spot-kick after substitute Raheem Sterling had been brought down by Carvajal and to add to Real’s woes Ramos was sent off in the closing stages after bringing Jesus down.
Ramos will miss next month’s second leg in Manchester when City will attempt to reach the quarter-finals of European club football’s premier competition.