MANCHESTER, 1 October 2019 – Dinamo Zagreb spent more than an hour frustrating Manchester City before the English Premier League champions finally found an opening in their UEFA Champions League Group C clash at Etihad Stadium tonight.
Dinamo Zagreb defended bravely before Pep Guardiola introduced England international Raheem Sterling who would break the deadlock and help the home side to all three points.
Dinamo Zagreb started nervously and an early mistake almost immediately from the kick-off put the hosts on attack. After a wealth of possession, Manchester City had their first real chance in the 13th minute when Dinamo keeper Dominik Livaković was forced to make a save from Sergio Aguero before David Silva flashed an effort over the bar.
Aguero was looking dangerous and after 20 minutes he would turn his man inside the box but his effort too would sail into the stands. A minute late and İlkay Guendogan this time went close as his powerful shot from 18 yards smashed against the bar.
It would be all Manchester City in the first half as they completed over 200 more passes but Dinamo Zagreb would defend well and hang on to go into the break at 0-0.
Dinamo Zagreb started the second half looking to attack more than they did in the opening 45 minutes with Dani Olmo and Bruno Perković causing the Manchester City defence some problems.
Just as in the first half, Manchester City would have all the possession and it was no surprise when substitute Sterling opened the scoring in the 66th minute, tapping in from close range after a low cross from the left from Riyad Mahrez.
Dinamo would bring on an extra attacker as they searched for an equaliser but they would fail to test Ederson in the Manchester City goal. The hosts would double the lead in the final minute of added time when Foden finished off a counter attack after Dinamo were caught short at the back.
Despite the loss, Dinamo coach Nenad Bjelica will feel confident his side can do more things in Group C. Dinamo is currently in second place on goal difference after Shakhtar Donetsk beat Atalanta 2-1.
Dinamo’s remaining matches:
22.10 – Šahtar – Dinamo (18:55)
6.11 – Dinamo – Šahtar (21:00)
26.11 – Atalanta – Dinamo (21:00)
11.12 – Dinamo – Manchester City (18:55)
MANCHESTER CITY 2 – 0 DINAMO ZAGREB
UEFA Champions League
GOALS: Sterling 66′, Foden 90′
MANCHESTER CITY – Ederson – Cancelo, Otamendi, Fernandinho, Mendy – Gündoga, Rodri, D. Silva (c) (Foden) – Mahrez, Agüero (Jesus), B. Silva (Sterling)
DINAMO ZAGREB – Livaković – Theophile (Gavranovič), Perić, Dilaver – Stojanović, Olmo, Ademi (c), Moro, Leovac – Oršić (Gojak), Petković (Atienwen)