Football NewsAkanji, Alvarez & Haaland Help Stroll Man City Into Champions League Quarter-Finals.
Post image

Goals from Manuel Akanji, Julian Alvarez and Erling Haaland ensured a stress-free night for the reigning Champions League holders as they progress to the last eight

Manchester City look like the most formidable team in Europe to re-live last year’s Treble. And that is without ever needing to get out of first let alone second gear to smash FC Copenhagen as they racked up another three goals in a horribly one-sided last 16 tie.

Man City looked unstoppable. As such, Guardiola was able to make wholesale changes, rest players for Anfield and still steamroller FC Copenhagen. Yes, it was only FC Copenhagen but the Danes did put Manchester United out of the group stages of the competition this season.

At times, FC Copenhagen actually gave City more problems than United did on their derby. City were also already 3-1 up from the first leg and were in cruise control.

But whenever they needed to, City just turned up the intensity and got the job done. They have so many more gears to get to when they have to face the big boys in this competition.

City also just have that wonderful habit of hitting a winning streak at the business end of the campaign. This was also their tenth straight win in this competition, a run stretching back to last season.

They are the dominant force in Europe and wasted no time to take charge at the Etihad. City were ahead inside five minutes. Julian Alvarez’s near post corner was volleyed in by Manuel Akanji.

It was 2-0 inside nine minutes. Alvarez’s corner found Rodri who hit the bar. The ball was not cleared properly, came back to Alvarez and his fierce shot went through keeper Kamil Grabara’s hands. FC Copenhagen did equalise in the first leg three weeks ago and were determined to have a say again.

Former Southampton midfielder Mohamed Elyounoussi led a counter attack, swapped passes with Orri Oskarsson before Elyounoussi then fired past City keeper Ederson. But it was game over in first half injury time. Rodri’s sensational inch perfect long ball forward picked out Haaland and the City goal machine controlled it, turned and smashed a low shot just inside the near post.

Even Pep Guardiola, arguably the most animated manager on any touchline, looked like he had a cigar on. He was so relaxed as Rodri was subbed at half time, Ruben Dias was given a breather and Haaland eventually went off to a standing ovation.

There was one horrible moment as City’s Matheus Nunes went off with a dislocated finger. But that was as scary as it got all night. FC Copenhagen huffed and puffed but City, despite getting a little sloppy as they took their foot off the pedal, just turned it into a training session. Rico Lewis hit the crossbar in injury time but, by then, all minds had switched towards another Treble.