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Manchester City vs Borussia Dortmund at Etihad Stadium

Etihad Stadium Referee : Ovidiu Hategan
6th April 2021 8:00 PM (BST)
  • 2 Manchester City

    • ‘19' Kevin De Bruyne
    • ‘90' Phil Foden
  • 1 Borussia Dortmund

    • ‘84' Marco Reus


Commentary By Robert Pollard


Bye for now

That's all for tonight - join us on Saturday for another important Premier League game, this time at home to Leeds. 

And then next Wednesday we play the second leg of this tie. 

Thanks for joining us! 


Dortmund coach Terzić, speaking to DAZN:

“Pep had some nice words for me at full-time, but we’re not done yet. We’ll see each other again in eight days' time. 

"It’s half-time and the tie is still open. We’ll be ready to give it our all to overturn the result and reach the next round.” 


Guardiola reaction

"Dortmund is a typical club from the Champions League. They play this competition for many years and know how to do it. 

"We are going there to win and now we analyse what we have done."


Guardiola reaction

"We are going to watch the game. Now we know exactly what they do. 

"We will adjust a few things to try to go there and win the game. We have won 27 in 28 and now Leeds. 

"And then we go to Germany to try to win the game."


Guardiola reaction

"First half we were not clever with the ball. Our pass was not good for their mate.

"Second half was much better and we had two, three clear chances at 1-0 to score the second. We couldn't do it but then we found the winning goal. 

"You need to make a good build up and today was not good. But it is normal. Dortmund is strong with good quality. With the pace and quality upfront they have it is hard to do what we want to do.

"But 2-1 is good and we have another chance in one week."


De Bruyne [on hectic schedule]

"The season started in September this way and never stopped. I think we’ve had no midweek off. It’s been an incredible run of games. 

"I think the team responded really well to the challenge. We are able to compete for every trophy and that is what everybody wants to do. 

"We try to take it game by game and now we need to prepare ourselves for Saturday."


De Bruyne [on his brilliant pass in build up to winner]

"I try to look up before I get the ball. I try to get a picture of what is happening and I was seeing Phil and Gundogan running to the second ball so I tried to chip it. 

"It was good that it went just above the defender. It was a good action, that’s all that matters."


De Bruyne reaction

"I think we saw the way they played. They played really well with the ball. 

"They caused us some problems some times. In the first half we had a little bit of difficulty creating chances but we did better in the second half. 

"We maybe should have scored more. When they came back to 1-1, it as a shame but it happens. They’re a good team. The reaction was good.

"2-1 is a tricky score but at least we go ahead with the second leg.

"They play really well between the lines, but it happens, the reaction was good and we had a good game and now we have to prepare for Saturday [Leeds]."


Strength of character

For City to concede so late and then score the winner even later...well, it's the latest example of the character running through this squad. 


Game on in Germany

Disappointing to concede but we'll take a win against a very decent side. 

Foden the star of the show and he totally deserved to score the winner. 


Foden bags his 12th of the season!!

De Bruyne plays a brilliant left-footed pass to Gundogan at the backpost. He plays it back to Foden, who fires home first time. 

That is a HUGE goal. 



Reus finishes superbly to equalise for Dortmund.

Bellingham plays the ball into Haaland and he lays it off first-time for Reus.

And the finish is exceptional. 



We are really in the ascendency now. Totally dominating possession and creating chances at will. 

This time Foden skips past two and fires wide. 

Ten minutes left and another goal would be beautiful. 



De Bruyne receives the ball from Foden and bursts directly to the heart of goal, but he pulls his shot wide of the post. 

Seconds later, De Bruyne returns the favour and feeds Foden, whose shot is well saved. 

We're controlling this game now. 


One of our own

Superb play from Foden down the left as he skips clear of Morey - but his ball across the box is cleared.

He's looking better and getter as this game progresses. 


HUGE chance for City

De Bruyne rolls Hummels, gets to the byline and picks out Foden 8 yards out. 

He tries a first-time shot but is saved by Hitz.

That was a huge, huge chance. 


Offside but good move

Ball played into Jesus, who produces a beautiful cushioned chest-down for Foden who is dispossessed before he can get a shot away. 

Jesus was offside anyway - but that was a good move and a sign of what Jesus can bring. 


Rare sighting

Odd sight.

Walker gets to the byline and cuts the ball back (a typical City move) but there's no one there to try and turn it home. 

Very unusual for us. We normally love that move and pack the box with bodies. 



City go straight up the other end from the corner - De Bruyne's fine ball sent us on our way - but move ends with Foden's effort going well wide. 


Odd 45 minutes

Strange half. 

City scored a very good goal, which separates the sides. 

We also had a penalty correctly overturned by VAR and have enjoyed decent periods of controlled possession. 

But Dortmund have looked dangerous on numerous occasions and scored a goal that was ruled out for a foul on Ederson - it probably should have stood. 

Plenty more to come from this one. 


Good move

Class from City.

Quality control inside the area from Bernardo, who sets up Mahrez - but the Algerian's effort is blocked on its way through. 



Open game

This game is becoming increasingly open. 

Dortmund are an attacking side anyway, and now they are behind, they are opening up far more. 

Second half could be very entertaining... 



Great ball from Dias puts Foden in on goal. He produces a powerful effort from inside the area and forces a save - but he was offside. 


Let off?

Ederson was taking too long in possession and Bellingham nipped in, dispossessed him and tapped home.

Looked a perfectly good goal to me but, luckily, a foul was given. 


Threat remains

Dortmund remain a threat. 

Haaland with a sniff but his touch lets him down, and then Reus slipped through but Ederson quick off his line. 

This game is revving up nicely. 


Much needed goal

City needed a spark and we got it. We'd been somewhat lethargic, with Dortmund far more dangerous in the early stages. 

That feels like a very big goal. 


Ruthless from City

Emre Can cedes possession in midfield very easily - and City were off at pace. 

Mahrez gave it to De Bruyne, who burst forward and fed Foden. 

He crossed to the backpost for Mahrez, who showed great composure to square it for KDB who smashed the ball home. 




Better from City. 

Best period of possession ends with two corners. First is headed away by Can and the second sees Dias adjudged to have fouled when winning a knock-down header. Harsh decision. 


Tough test

Dortmund, you can tell already, are a dangerous side. 

They'll make mistakes in possession - but they can also break at pace and have firepower in the final third. 



Bellingham with a powerful effort from close range saved by Ederson.

A very good stop from the 'keeper and a real warning sign from the visitors. 


Slow start

A somewhat muted opening couple of minutes. Best moment so far was Dortmund's swift counter that ended with Dahoud's attempted cross coming to nothing. 

City just stroking the ball around and trying establish a period of sustained possession. 


Reminder of our team...

XI | Ederson, Walker, Dias, Stones, Cancelo, Rodrigo, Gundogan, Bernardo, Foden, Mahrez, De Bruyne (C)  

SUBS | Steffen, Trafford, Ake, Sterling, Jesus, Aguero, Zinchenko, Laporte, Torres, Mendy, Fernandinho, Garcia 


Edin Terzić, Dortmund coach

"We need to be at the top of our game in both legs; on it from the first second to the last, and maybe for extra time too. 

"To overcome Manchester City would be something special. Guardiola is undoubtedly one of the best coaches in the world. For almost 15 years his teams have dominated football." 


Our Champions League record

2019/20: quarter-finals
2018/19: quarter-finals
2017/18: quarter-finals
2016/17: round of 16
2015/16: semi-finals
2014/15: round of 16
2013/14: round of 16
2012/13: group stage
2011/12: UEFA Europa League round of 16 (having transferred from UEFA Champions League group stage)
2010/11: UEFA Europa League round of 16 


The Goat has spoken


Match officials

Referee: Ovidiu Haţegan (ROU)

Assistant referees: Octavian Șovre (ROU) , Sebastian Gheorghe (ROU)

Video Assistant Referee: Marco Di Bello (ITA)

Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Paolo Valeri (ITA)

Fourth official: István Kovács (ROU)

UEFA Delegate: Kris Bellon (BEL)

UEFA Referee observer: Hugh Dallas (SCO)



“We have the opportunity to get back in this situation and prove to ourselves we are ready for every challenge. 

“This season, we showed when we do our game and we are focused on our game, we have a lot of chances. 

“It’s true after a difficult defeat you learn and face the next time with more ambition and desire. That is what we are going to try and do.

“But we must focus, not accelerate. We want to achieve big things, keep calm and play our game.”


Latest from Pep

"We want to have the ball and arrive in the box as much as we can.

"Do what we have done this year. That's all. Football dictates. We try to do our best, then rest, then Leeds, and then Germany and try to do good again." 


Latest from Pep

"Same pressure. We try to do a good game and then next one. All clubs want to go as far as possible, we are not an exception. We want to win tonight and then fly to Germany and win. 

"The players want to win - like Borussia Dortmund want to win, too. 

"We are happy to be here and want to do a good game."


Quality across the park

It's a lineup full of quality this evening. 

No recognised striker - but playing with a False 9 has worked a dream in recent months. 

There's energy, tenacity, guile and goals. 

Can't wait for this one. 


Played together...

İlkay Gündoğan & Mats Hummels, Marcel Schmelzer, Łukasz Piszczek (Dortmund 2011–16)

İlkay Gündoğan & Marco Reus (Dortmund 2012–16)

İlkay Gündoğan & Roman Bürki (Dortmund 2015/16)

João Cancelo & Emre Can (Juventus 2018/19)

Raheem Sterling & Emre Can (Liverpool 2014/15) 


City team

Starting Eleven

31. Ederson 

2. Kyle Walker

3. Rúben Dias

5. John Stones

8. Ilkay Gündogan 

16. Rodrigo 

17. Kevin De Bruyne (C)

20. Bernardo Silva

26. Riyad Mahrez 

27. João Cancelo

47. Phil Foden


13. Zack Steffen 

85. James Trafford 

6. Nathan Aké 

7. Raheem Sterling 

9. Gabriel Jesus

10. Sergio Agüero 

11. Oleksandr Zinchenko 

14. Aymeric Laporte

21. Ferran Torres

22. Benjamin Mendy

25. Fernandinho

50. Eric Garcia


26 wins in 27 matches

We have won 26 of our last 27 games - a phenomenal run of form that has set up our season beautifully. 

Any doubts the international break may have stifled our progress were buried on Saturday. Our performance at Leicester, one of the best teams in the Premier League, was outstanding. We were dominant throughout. 

Let's hope for more of the same this evening. 


Haaland threat

Erling Haaland is the top scorer in this season's UEFA Champions League with 10.

He stands four clear of a chasing pack of Olivier Giroud, Álvaro Morata, Neymar, Marcus Rashford, Youssef En-Nesyri and Kylian Mbappé. 


Rodri [on preparing for Dortmund]

“We don’t focus on individual players. We analyse them as a team and how they usually play.

“It’s important to know the individual players but we have to be focused on the team.

"There are some players I don’t know much about because they are young but they have an unbelievable squad.

"They show they can score lots of goals. They concede, also, but they are dangerous.

"We don't have to change our way of playing. We take the ball, control counter attacks and control dangerous players.

"The key is if we do a good performance in our way - and control the game in our way - I think it will be good for us."


More from Pep's programme notes

"It was confirmed last week that Sergio Aguero will leave us at the end of the season. Everyone knows he is a Manchester City legend - what he has done for the club is remarkable and it was a hard decision. 

"For now, Sergio is focused on winning football matches, but I promise all of you we will say goodbye to him in a special way at the end of the season. He deserves it."



It is 706 minutes since City conceded a UEFA Champions League goal, Luis Díaz's 14th-minute opener for Porto on Matchday 1. 

The record for the competition, set by Arsenal in 2005/06, is 995 minutes, with City now second in the all-time rankings having moved above Juventus (690 minutes). 


Rodri [on desire to win UCL with Aguero]

“We have the motivation every single year.

“Sergio is a very important player for us. Of course, he deserves to go in the best way from this club.

“For me, it would be a dream to achieve this competition with him and the team.

“It would be the best present for him and everyone.”



“We are currently on a good run of form, there’s no denying it.

"The last few months have been great for us, the quarter-final will be a special one for everybody.

“We have to prepare ourselves in the best way possible and try to get through to the semi-finals. I think that’s our main objective right now.

“These moments are so brief that they fly by, and if you don’t give your best you end up regretting it.

“Thankfully, I’ve never regretted anything  because I’ve always given my very best in every moment of my career.”


More from Pep's programme notes

"In the last few days we received the news that some of our fans will be allowed to attend the Carabao Cup final. Although it is only a small number, it is a move in the right direction. We have missed your support more than you can imagine and we cannot wait until we can fill stadiums with our supporters once more. 

"I want to thank you all for your continued support. I promise you it means so much to the players, my staff and myself. The season is long and difficult but knowing we have so many people wanting us to do well makes a huge difference."


Good omen?

City are on a six-game winning run, home and away, against German clubs – including this season's round of 16 - whereas Dortmund have lost their last five games against Premier League opponents. 


Pep's programme notes...

The boss penned his programme notes after Saturday's win at Leicester. I'll feed the best bits into here throughout the evening, starting with this on tonight's opponents...

"Tonight, we face Borussia Dortmund, a side I know well from my time working in Germany. I can assure everyone they are a squad with incredible quality, capable of beating any side in Europe over two matches. They proved that in the last-16 when they eliminated Sevilla, who are undoubtedly one of the best teams in Europe when it comes to knock-out football. 

"Dortmund are a club that possess a winning mentality – a culture of success. I know how hard these two games will be, but my players are ready to fight. 

"If we want to progress, we are going to have to play our best game. We need to be focused, work hard with and without the ball and play with freedom in attacking areas. That’s how we have played all season and it’s the best way for us to approach these games."


Form guide 📈

City have enjoyed a successful Champions League campaign, having won seven and drawn one of our eight games in Europe this season.

We head into the quarter-final having not conceded a Champions League goal in 11 hours and 35 minutes of football - the second longest run in the competition's history.

We booked our place in the quarter-final thanks to a 4-0 aggregate win over Borussia Monchengladbach in the Round of 16.

Our win at Leicester on Saturday means we have won 26 of our last 27 matches in all competitions.

The German side have also enjoyed a fruitful Champions League season, having lost just one of their eight games in this season's competition.

They come into the quarter-final having defeated Spanish outfit Sevilla, 5-4 on aggregate in the Round of 16.

On Saturday, they were beaten at home by Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga. 


Guardiola (on Ilkay Gundogan's incredible form) 💬

“He deserves this role of leadership through what he has done on the pitch. It is the best way to show his ability.

“I am delighted with the external recognition he gets now because he is scoring goals and making assists. He deserves it.

“I know how he behaved when he was injured and in bad moments. He is incredibly beloved because he is such an incredible guy.

“He thinks not just about himself but the team. He deserves what he builds. He is the same player.

“The year we won the second Premier League with 98 points, he was incredible as a holding midfielder.

“But now, of course, he is our top scorer and that's why he gets the recognition now he deserves.”


Pep Guardiola (on looking to put last season's quarter-final defeat behind us) 💬

“Of course [it was tough, emotionally]. It remains in my head for weeks. It was painful, I cannot deny it.

“It was the last game of the season. We wanted to go through. We congratulate Lyon. We didn't do it quite well. We didn’t deserve to go through.

“It was painful of course, but what can we do? For a short time, ten days, we suffer. Then, we wake up and prepare for the next season.

“But the defeat hurts - especially this one. Day after, we say goodbye and everyone goes away. It was disappointing.

“But we are here again to try again.”


Early team news 📋

City are have no new injury concerns ahead of the clash.

Meanwhile, former Blue Jadon Sancho is unavailable for Dortmund with a muscle injury, and Dan-Axel Zagadou (knee) and Youssoufa Moukoko (foot) are also sidelined.

Interestingly, on Borussia’s official website, they have a 'how they might line up...' feature. Here's what they've gone for:

Manchester City: Ederson – Walker, Stones, Dias, Cancelo – Silva, Rodri, Gündogan – de Bruyne – Mahrez, Foden

Borussia Dortmund: Hitz – Can, Akanji, Hummels, Guerreiro – Dahoud – Bellingham, Delaney – Reus, Haaland, Reyna

What do you reckon...?


We're Not Really Here 💙

Presenter, Natalie Pike will be joined by former City teammates, Paul Dickov and Andy Morrison for our We're Not Really Here matchday show.

The show will begin just over an hour before kick-off at 18:55 (UK), and you can tune in to hear expert opinion and analysis from the City pair ahead of the game.

We will then head back to the studio at half-time to take a look at the first 45 minutes, before returning after the full-time whistle where we will hear the post-match thoughts of our City experts.

We're Not Really Here is available to view across all of our digital platforms, and fans can get involved with the show by using the hashtag #WNRH on Twitter.


It's matchday! ⚽

The Champions League is back!

City return to European action tonight with the visit of Borussia Dortmund to the Etihad Stadium in the quarter-finals.

Pep Guardiola's men will be looking to gain a strong advantage to take over to Germany next week, as his side seek a place in the semis for a second time.

It's a 20:00 (UK time) kick-off in Manchester and as always, we'll be bringing you full coverage of the game, including pre-match build-up, live text commentary and post-match reaction, right here in the Matchday Centre.

It's a big one... and we'd love to know how you're feeling ahead of the clash so get in touch on Twitter, using the hashtag #WNRH


Other games that day

  • Real Madrid3
  • FC Bayern München0
    Paris Saint-Germain0
  • FC Porto0

As it stood

P GD Pts
1 FC Bayern München 6 +13 16
2 Atlético de Madrid 6 -1 9
3 FC Red Bull Salzburg 6 -7 4
4 Lokomotiv Moscow 6 -5 3
Link To Full Table