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By Chris Bevan
BBC Sport at Etihad Stadium
Manchester City director Pep Guardiola says he is”so sorry” for Phil Foden afterwards he and Raheem Sterling came off the bench to score at a 2-0 win over a stubborn Dinamo Zagreb at the Champions League.
Home swept from a Riyad Mahrez cross midway through the half, then put up 19-year-old Foden time as City’s second win took them top of Group C.
Guardiola stated:”He (Foden) has amazing finishing and created an incredible step forward tonight.
“I am so sorry for him – he prefers to play . I am certain that he’ll donate and help us ”
The England squad to the next round of internationals is named on Thursday.
“I am buzzing for Phil Foden,” Sterling told BT Sport. “I want him at the national group. When he keeps going he’ll probably be there.”
Foden explained:”You have to show the boss what you can do daily in training. Every kid wants to play but you need to keep individual .”
In truth, this should have been a success, together with City squandering a lot of first-half chances, for making the distinction, however in the long run they were thankful to Sterling.
Despite enjoying over 80% of ownership until he broke the deadlock with his ninth goal of the season from close range, it had been an unexpectedly frustrating night for the side of Guardiola.
They were unable to take them before the second half, although it wasn’t true that City struggled to create opportunities in the absence of the injured Kevin de Bruyne.
Sergio Aguero has been the very first to squander an opportunity, with the rounding Zagreb keeper Dominik Livakovic from a backpass but watching him recover with a rescue.
Bernardo Silva was also off target and Aguero skied an additional attempt before Ilkay Gundogan blasted a shot against the bar and David Silva fired wide.
Dutch referee Serdar Gozubuyuk had blown his whistle for a handball from Bernardo Silva when Aguero did eventually get the ball at the web.
The second half saw their fans Croatian champions Dinamo, who had been roared on by their fans throughout, set up opposition , also before Bernardo Silva was substituted by Sterling gave City their breakthrough.
More chances followed however, it dropped to Foden to finish off Zagreb using a nice first-time attack .
It gives City their second Group C triumph also leaves them well positioned to make the final 16 while Zagreb have suffered 13 away team game beats in a row – a Champions League listing.
Guardiola spoke before the game about having to”seduce” City lovers that are reluctant to fall to the charms of the Champions League, preferring rather Premier League success.
Little seems to get shifted, the rivalry’s anthem being booed within the Etihad prior to kick-off supplying the case of that.
This one-sided affair was never likely to be a fixture that provided the power that Guardiola wants, although the air after that has been far from flat.
Their fire could never match that of the Zagreb supporters, who chanted throughout and removed their tops if they dropped Even though City’s fans were enthused enough during.
The emotions of guardiola were on display, with his frustration with the officials evident on more than one event as his area prowled.
However he got the result he wanted, together with City win Norwich supplying more evidence , if they were ever in crisis, it’s currently over since their shock defeat.
Guardiola said after the match that he does not believe De Bruyne’s groin problem is severe, which is a piece of of good news for City in a season when they’ve lost Leroy Sane and Aymeric Laporte .
De Bruyne missed most of last season as well as while City treble showed they could deal with, his nine assists this year have been a timely reminder of his own abilities.
Without himCity’s midfield were able to carve Zagreb open until the rest, however you felt that they missed the Belgian longer when the away side awakened after the rest.
They were far less effective although City tried to replicate De Bruyne balls into the box, notably during Benjamin Mendy about the abandoned.
With Mahrez notably quieter than against Everton at the weekend, City didn’t take the danger on the chunk in broad locations.
Produced a difference in attack immediately and should’ve won a. Guardiola was reserved for whining about that decision, but he soon celebrated Sterling’s aim.
City’s next game sees them back at the Etihad to face Wolves from the Premier League on Sunday (14:00 BST).
They restart their Champions League campaign on 22 October, at home to Atalanta (20:00), when Dinamo Zagreb are off at Shakhtar Donetsk (17:55).
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