• News

Manchester City has a fun field trip to Shakhtar Donetsk

Pep Guardiola, Manchester City
Getty Images

With a solid performance from Riyad Mahrez, Manchester City started the season on the right foot during their trip to Shakhtar Donetsk.

Pep Guardiola has many aces up his sleeve for this UEFA Champions League season, his Manchester City squad went on a field trip to Shakhtar Donetsk this Wednesday.

The Ukrainian squad is arguably the club that has faced the Citizens the most during Pep Guardiola’s spell with the English squad, they know each other too well.

With this in mind, the Catalan manager knew that he had to put out an unpredictable squad for this trip to Donetsk.

Given that players such as Sergio Aguero or Bernardo Silva are having so much activity in the Premier League.

Pep decided to give participation to some of his other stars who aren’t playing as much in that competition.

Fortunately for the Citizens’ fans, Manchester City has one of the most impressive rosters in European football today.

Pep can have the luxury of lining up star players such as Riyad Mahrez or Gabriel Jesus for matches such as this one, and the level of performance will be similar every time.

Tonight was no exception from Pep Guardiola’s side, as he decided to leave Aguero and Silva on the bench.

The other major problem that Pep solved brilliantly for this match was the centre-back crisis that the team is going through, they only have Nicolas Otamendi left to use.

The manager decided to give Fernandinho a spot in this position, and the Brazilian responded to the challenge with a good performance.

The first half was truly an easy time for the Citizens, who dominated the game completely and even got ahead in the scoreboard with relative ease.

The first goal came after Ilkay Gundogan sent a potent shot to the post, the rebound was taken by Riyad Mahrez and the scored the first goal of the evening.

The Algerian player returned the favor to Gundogan a few minutes later by providing him with an assist for the second goal.

With a 2-0 result in the first half, Manchester City and Shakhtar Donetsk went to rest for 15 minutes.

This truly seemed like a walk in the park for the Citizens, the Shakhtar squad they faced today is nothing compared to the ones from the past.

Pep Guardiola could rest easy knowing that the result was practically in the bag, but he still wanted his players to secure at least another goal.

The second half brought us more of the same from City, they kept dominating the ball and recovered it quickly after losing it.

Pep gave a chance to Bernardo Silva, Joao Cancelo, and Benjamin Mendy during the final 15 minutes of the game.

But the coach didn’t want to make any sudden movements from the bench before securing that third goal.

Jesus seals the result in a counter-attack.

With fifteen minutes left on the clock, Manchester City kept trying to get that third goal that gave them the chance to breathe a little.

Kevin de Bruyne found an opening in which Gabriel Jesus ran to a huge free space on the pitch.

The Brazilian striker stood in front of the Shakhtar goalkeeper and finished his opponent with a shot to the low corner.

It was already 0-3 in Donetsk and the locals showed no signs of life during the final minutes.

This victory comes as a pleasant way to start the UEFA Champions League season for Manchester City.

The English champions have a clear target on their minds this season, they want to win the European tournament above the other competitions.

After winning the Premier League twice in a row, it’s clear that Pep Guardiola wants to focus on dominating Europe more than anything.

The next games in line for both teams will be Atalante for Shakhtar, and Dynamo Zagreb for the Citizens.

Being real with this, we honestly believe that Manchester City won’t have a true challenge in the Champions League until after the group stage.

We expect Pep Guardiola’s side to breeze past all their opponents and then see who they get in the round of 16, that’s where the real competition will start for them.

What’s your biggest take away from Manchester City’s dominant victory at Shakhtar Donetsk? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.