Manchester City have one foot in the semi-finals of the 2022-2023 UEFA Champions League after beating Bayern Munich 3-0 in the first leg of their quarter-final tie at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on Tuesday evening.
The defending Premier League champions were on top right from the first whistle and took a deserved lead in the 27th minute. Rodri received a ball from the right in the middle of the park and curled a superb left-footed effort past the diving Yann Sommer in goal for Bayern to give City the lead. Bayern tried to find a way back into the tie but were largely held to speculative long-range efforts that did not trouble the City defence unduly as they went into the half-time interval a goal down.
The game carried on in much the same way after the restart as City doubled their advantage in the 70th minute. In-form winger Jack Grealish dispossessed Dayot Upamecano high up the pitch before setting Erling Haaland free with a delightful back-heel. The Norwegian striker’s inviting cross into the box was powerfully headed home by Bernardo Silva.
Six minutes later, Haaland himself put the finishing touches on City’s emphatic victory by latching on to John Stones’ knock-down and finishing past Sommer to notch his 45th goal of the season, a record tally for a player in an English side in the Premier League era.
3-0 was the final scoreline as Manchester City stamped their authority all over this quarter-final tie and will surely be favourites to go through to the semi-final stage. In fact, such was their dominance that they must now be considered favourites for the Champions League title.
Furthermore, with the job all but done in the Champions League, they can now shift their focus back to defending their Premier League title, where they are locked in a riveting battle with Arsenal. Bayern, on the other hand, need a minor miracle if they are to progress from this stage, but also have work to do if they are to retain their Bundesliga title under increasing pressure from Borussia Dortmund.