Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Man City pummel Brugge as starlet Palmer bags first Champions League goal

Cole Palmer celebrates his goal for Manchester City vs Club Brugge, October 2021

Manchester City pummelled Club Brugge 5-1 with starlet Cole Palmer bagging his first Champions League goal from off the bench.

City took control of the match in Belgium from the first whistle. Joao Cancelo and Riyad Mahrez gave them a two-goal half-time advantage. Kyle Walker and Palmer doubled that, before Mahrez added his second in response to a Brugge consolation.

The Brugge side featured ex-Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mingolet, West Ham and Man Utd target Charles de Ketelaere and Arsenal and Leeds linked winger Noa Lang.

Pep Guardiola named his strongest available team bar Gabriel Jesus, who had not trained since international duty and was replaced by Riyad Mahrez.

City took control of the game early on. Jack Grealish had a claim for a penalty waved away.

The £100m man had the ball in the back of the net soon after. But he was adjudged to have committed a foul before lobbing Mignolet.

Another disallowed goal followed when the offside flag was raised against Rodri, who had tucked home from a free-kick.

City continued to dominate and Kevin De Bruyne should have done better with his effort from inside the box which was straight at Mignolet.

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But they didn’t have to wait much longer for the breakthrough. A delightful lobbed through ball by Phil Foden was chested down and slid home by Cancelo.

Brugge responded positively to going behind. They spurned a promising free-kick before causing slight panic in the City box from a corner.

It was 2-0 City before half-time, though. The visitors won a penalty when Mahrez was tripped, and he dusted himself down to send Mignolet the wrong way.

There was almost another before the break as the spot-kick scorer had a shot on target and De Bruyne fired over.

Riyad Mahrez takes a penalty for Manchester City vs Club Brugge, October 2021

A chance for three came immediately after the restart too. Mahrez’s cross couldn’t quite find Grealish and Foden, with the latter having a penalty claim turned down by VAR.

Ultimately, it was a case of third time lucky. A lovely passing move which took Brugge apart was finished off by Walker.

Palmer gets in on the act

A whole host of changes were made by Guardiola, including bringing on 19-year-old Palmer.

And after just two minutes on the pitch he scored his first Champions League goal.

Fellow sub Raheem Sterling pulled the back back to the edge of the box, from where the youngster curled in a left-footed effort.

He nearly turned provider when he picked out Walker with a pinpoint pass. However, the right-back hesitated and the chance passed.

Manchester City players celebrate a goal against Club Brugge, October 2021

Ederson began to be troubled in the closing exchanges and was forced into two fine saves, including one from a De Ketelaere header.

The Brazilian ‘keeper then lost his clean sheet when Hans Vanaken swept home after a cross from the right was flicked on.

Mahrez added to his tally minutes later. A Fernandinho pass picked him out and he placed home goal number five to wrap up the win.

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