By Mariam Ayebare & Agencies
Manchester City’s comeback was down to the magnificent movement of Raheem Sterling, and this is something the 25-year-old has mastered under Pep Guardiola.
Sterling was brought off the bench in the 73rd minute. In the 78th, he made an off-the-ball run behind Real Madrid’s defense, before Kevin De Bruyne joined his team-mate in support.
He crossed, found Gabriel Jesus and bang, 1-1. Then in the 83rd minute, Sterling runs directly at Real from the left-wing, forcing Dani Carvajal into fouling him and winning the penalty.
De Bruyne then found the bottom-left corner for 2-1. What an outstanding substitute’s performance this was from Sterling.
His movement is first class and that was what gave Real nightmares, leaving City in the driving seat of this tie.
As the ultimate tactician, Guardiola is someone who tries to push the boundaries, and we saw an incredibly fluid set-up from City here.
Jesus could be seen as a left wing-back then the central forward. De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva could be seen acting as false nines.
Raheem Sterling’s outstanding performance off the bench confused Madrid players and it really showed how good Pep Guardiola is when it comes to reading games when he made a tactical surprise by flooding the midfield.