Hoffenheim 1-2 Manchester City
1′ – Ishak Belfodil (Hoffenheim) (1-0)
7′ – Sergio Aguero (Man City) (1-1)
87′ – David Silva (Man City) (1-2)
City started the game looking to turn around what would be a very unusual situation for them with a four-game losing streak in the Champions League. They started without their first choice left back options and looked fill in the creative void left by the absence of De Bruyne with a Gundogan-David Silva axis.
For much of the first half, Laporte was exposed down the flank with his lack of positional acumen in that role repeatedly shown up. Hoffenheim looked to emulate Lyon’s success by closing the spaces between the midfield and defensive lines and breaking at pace when they had possession. Although City had the better chances and Aguero missed out a few gimmes, they had very little to show for it for most of the match.
Changing the system in the second half with Otamendi coming off, replaced by Stones who played in what appeared to be a floating defensive role. And Bernardo Silva who came on and instantly added an impetus moving constantly between the midfield and driving down the flanks. Bernardo Silva changed the dynamic of the game with City creating more opportunities. He created the pull back for David Silva to latch on to, and a miscontrol from the Hoffenheim backline certainly helping Silva to neatly tuck it away.
The German club will be aggrieved that it took a magical Silva moment in the dying minutes for City to get the much needed 3 points. City will be very relieved knowing that the Champions League is still a frontier too far for the domestically dominant club.