Manchester City were at their best as they came from behind to blow Leicester City away at the Etihad Stadium. Goals from Riyad Mahrez, Ilkay Gundogan and Gabriel Jesus meant Jamie Vardy’s opener counted for nothing. Here’s how we rated the players…
Ederson – 7
Couldn’t have done much more about the Vardy’s opening goal, and played a big part in the passing from the back that saw us dominate the first half. Ederson was involved in an incident that could have resulted in a penalty, but in a pressured situation, I felt the ‘keeper had no choice but to come and attempt to claim the ball.
Kyle Walker – 7
If Walker is going to play as far forward as he does, we can’t have him missing simple passes against Leicester City. Vardy got two very good early chances from Walker’s mistakes and scored from one of them – it needs to stop happening. I don’t want to be negative, though – apart from those instances he was good all-round.
Fernandinho – 7
Completely rinsed by Vardy for the opening goal, which is to be expected at his age. Ventured extremely far forward on occasion, leaving space open at the back, but made up for it more often than not. Overall a good display by our makeshift centre-back.
Nicolas Otamendi – 7
Like Fernandinho, he didn’t get an awful lot wrong. Our dominance of possession meant Otamendi didn’t get tested too often, but mostly stood up to the scrutiny. Could easily continue to start alongside Fernandinho until Laporte returns next year.
Benjamin Mendy – 8
Improving every week and looking much more like the defender we signed. There was a lovely moment in the first half where he powered through three Leicester defenders and laid it off to a teammate. There’s a huge amount of technical ability in Mendy as well as his obvious strength and height, he just needs to get back to showing it consistently.
Ilkay Gündoğan – 7
Scored a penalty at a crucial time in the first half, reminding us all of the area where he stands head and shoulders above the rest of the squad. Why he doesn’t take all of our penalties is beyond me, even when Agüero is fit. More than played his part in a great team performance before being forced off with an injury.
Kevin de Bruyne – 9
A classic De Bruyne performance, threading passes to the forwards from the very heart of every counter-attack. The Belgian smashed the base of the Leicester goalpost early on and put in several balls that should have been scored. In the second half, he was a key player, setting up Jesus’ vital goal with a brilliant run and cross, and he could have scored too.
Bernardo Silva – 8
Bernardo just feels like a different player when in the midfield – a far better one in my eyes. Silky dribbling and relentless energy are his two best qualities, and both shine more brightly when the play is happening on both sides of him and he has more options. The core appeal of Bernardo is that he’s a lot like David Silva mixed with Fernandinho – a player like that belongs in the central areas.
Riyad Mahrez – 9 [Man of the Match – JUST!]
Looked extremely lively down the right hand side, threatening the Leicester defence with some deadly skills and close control. Was unlucky not to create two goals in the first half an hour, before he scored the opener with a deflected low shot. It’s not every week we truly feel the presence of one of the best African players of the century, but when we do it’s breathtaking.
Gabriel Jesus – 8
Important part of the jigsaw up front, even if the first half wasn’t his very best work of the season. He offers valuable options for the players around him through either coming deep to receive the ball or creating space by dragging defenders away with curving runs. Scored the third with a tap-in made possible by his intelligent positioning and instinct for where the ball might end up.
Raheem Sterling – 7
Was quiet for patches but his contribution was vital in those moments when he came alive. Almost created a second City goal in the first half, before winning a penalty to make it 2-1. You could see the tactical problems Sterling caused Leicester with his pace and football brain, refusing to give the full-back a break.
Rodri – 7
Solidified the win in the latter stages of the game, creating much-needed assurance in front of the back-four.
Phil Foden – N/A
No time to mark.
Sergio Agüero – N/A
No time to mark – nice to see him back, though!
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