Manchester City refuse to get carried away after thumping win in Lisbon

Sporting Lisbon v Manchester City – UEFA Champions League – Round of 16 – 1st Leg – Jose Alvalade Stadium
(Image credit: Isabel Infantes)

Manchester City were keeping their feet firmly on the ground after making an emphatic Champions League statement with a stunning 5-0 win over Sporting Lisbon.

The Premier League leaders were at their ruthless best as they clinically dismantled the Portuguese champions in their last-16 first-leg clash at the Jose Alvalade Stadium on Tuesday, all but securing their quarter-final place.

Yet while Pep Guardiola praised his side’s efficiency in front of goal after delivering this “dream result”, the City manager was not happy with other aspects of the performance, notably their passing.

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“We can do better,” Guardiola said after the game, underlining City’s determined focus as they seek to go one better than last year’s runners-up finish.

There also seemed to be little celebrating among the players, with thoughts already turning to Saturday’s clash with Tottenham.

“It was a very good game and performance from the team, clinical,” said Riyad Mahrez, who scored City’s opening goal and then had a hand in two others before half-time.

“We scored in good moments of the game and we made it comfortable for us, but at the same time it was a difficult game and we had to stay focused to win.

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“We weren’t at our best but the difference was we were efficient and clinical. It is good but we have to keep going.

“The next game is Saturday, Tottenham at home. In front of our fans we have to give everything to try to win the game. That is the mentality.”

City needed just seven minutes to take the lead, with Mahrez turning in a Kevin De Bruyne pass after a Phil Foden shot had been beaten out by goalkeeper Antonio Adan.

There was a two-minute wait while VAR checked for a possible offside but once the goal was given, the floodgates opened.

Bernardo Silva scored twice on a happy return to his home city

Bernardo Silva scored twice on a happy return to his home city (Isabel Infantes/PA)

Bernardo Silva doubled the lead with a spectacular half-volley following a corner from Mahrez, who then teed up Foden for the third. Silva made it 4-0 before the break on a sweet return to his home city and thought he had claimed a hat-trick after the restart only to be denied by VAR.

Raheem Sterling wrapped up the win before the hour with a brilliant long-range strike that took him into City’s top-10 goalscorers on 127.

“It was very good from Raheem, a top goal, Bernardo’s as well,” said Mahrez, who has scored nine goals in his last nine appearances for City.

“Everyone had a very good game and we are happy, but now we focus on the next game.

“We push each other every day. The manager pushes us and we compete with each other for the team. We are always there, every three or four days.”

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