Despite a late first-half goal from Serbian side Red Star Belgrade, Manchester City produced a dominant performance all-round to secure a comeback victory and start their defence of the UEFA Champions League on a winning note.
Pep Guardiola’s men won the title, which was the club’s first-ever last season against Italian side Inter Milan, and after a Uefa Super Cup win against Sevilla, they started their UEFA Champions League group stage with the victory at Etihad Stadium on Tuesday.
Manchester City went into the game having maintained a 100% record start to the season after five games in the Premier League, although Pep Guardiola’s side had to come from behind at the weekend to beat West Ham United 3-1, and they had to do it again on Tuesday.
Ghanian forward Osman Bukari helped Red Star Belgrade to a shock lead just before halftime as the Serbians were dominated all through the first 45 minutes by the hosts.
However, their lead lasted into the break as Julian Alvarez scored the first of his brace in the 47th minute before putting Manchester City in front on the hour mark.
Rodri scored the winner in the final last season as Manchester City defeated Inter Milan to the title; he was on target in the 73rd minute.
Pep Guardiola said winning the UEFA Champions League had now become easier after winning the first one.
“It’ll be easier. The hardest to win is the first one. For our club to win the Champions League is incredible, but in perspective, how many won one Champions League? A lot. We haven’t done anything special with just one, but we are incredibly proud.” Guardiola said.
AC Milan 0-0 Newcastle
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Feyenoord 2-0 Celtic
Lazio 1-1 Atletico Madrid
PSG 2-0 Bor. Dortmund
Man City 3-1 RS Belgrade
Barcelona 5-0 R Antwerp
Shak. Donetsk 1-3 Porto.
Daniel Ademiju Idowu