A record-breaking goal from Sergio Aguero sent Manchester City into the Champions League knockout stages with a brilliant 4-2 win at Napoli.
Aguero struck in the 69th minute at the imposing Stadio San Paolo to enter the club record books as their leading goalscorer with 178.
It all but settled an absorbing contest in which City had responded to Lorenzo Insigne’s early strike with goals from Nicolas Otamendi and John Stones, only to be pegged back again by a Jorginho penalty. Raheem Sterling put the gloss on City’s win in the closing moments.
Tweet of the match– City’s injured defender Benjamin Mendy looks at Aguero’s record-breaking goal from Sterling’s perspective.
Star Man – Nicolas Otamendi
The Argentinian is enjoying his best spell as a City player. He made some solid defensive contributions, particularly as Napoli dominated early on, and brought City back into the game with the equalising goal. He might even have had a second goal but for a bad mis-kick when well placed.
Moment of the match
City’s victory and their place in the last 16 was effectively secured by Aguero’s goal, and it is a moment that will be remembered for much more as the Argentinian claimed his place in club history. Eric Brook’s previous record of 177 had stood since 1939. Aguero seized the chance after a Leroy Sane attack had broken down, picking up a loose ball and showing great composure to drive home.
In the crowd
Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri said he wanted to see fear on the faces of City players at the intimidating San Paolo. The fans certainly did their best to play their part, even though the arena was far from full. The volume was loud and unrelenting. It may have contributed to City’s slow start, but it did not affect them for long. City’s performance in such an environment underlines a growing maturity on this stage.
Jose Reina 7 (out of 10), Elseid Hysaj 7, Raul Albiol 7, Kalidou Koulibaly 5, Faouzi Ghoulam 6, Jorginho 6, Allan 6, Marek Hamsik 7, Jose Callejon 7, Dries Mertens 6.
Substitutes: Christian Maggio (for Ghoulam, 31) 6, Marko Rog (for Allan, 75) 6, Adam Ounas (for Jorginho, 82) 6.
Ederson 7, Danilo 6, John Stones 7, Nicolas Otamendi 8, Fabian Delph 6, Fernandinho 7, Ilkay Gundogan 7, Raheem Sterling 8, Kevin De Bruyne 7, Leroy Sane 8, Sergio Aguero 7.
Substitutes: David Silva (for Gundogan, 71) 6, Bernardo Silva (for Aguero, 76) 6, Gabriel Jesus (for Sane, 90) 5.
Who’s up next?
Manchester City v Arsenal (Premier League, November 5)
Chievo v Napoli (Serie A, November 5)