Hoffenheim 1-2 Manchester City: Late David Silva goal hands visitors victory
Sergio Aguero also on the scoresheet in Champions League Group F clash
By Charlotte Marsh
Last Updated: 03/10/18 7:34am
Manchester City got their first victory of the Champions League campaign as David Silva's late goal handed them a 2-1 win away to Hoffenheim in Group F.
Tuesday evening's game was topped and tailed by goals, with Ishak Belfodil scoring inside a minute to put the hosts ahead at the Rhein-Neckar Arena before Sergio Aguero (8) levelled things up not long after.
Man City should have been awarded a penalty in the 74th minute after goalkeeper Oliver Baumann took down Leroy Sane in the area, before David Silva (87) slotted home to seal the win for the visitors.
Pep Guardiola's side move up to second in Group F ahead of Lyon v Shakhtar Donetsk at 8pm, while Hoffenheim are bottom.
Hoffenheim: Baumann (6), Brenet (6), Kaderabek (6), Hoogma (6), Akpoguma (5), Posch (5), Demirbay (7), Belfodil (7), Joelinton (6), Grillitsch (6), Szalai (5).
Subs used: Kramaric (4), Bittencourt (n/a), Hack (n/a).
Man City: Ederson (6), Walker (7), Kompany (7), Otamendi (6), Laporte (7), Fernandinho (7), Gundogan (7), D Silva (8), Sane (7), Sterling (6), Aguero (7).
Subs used: Stones (5), B Silva (7), Mahrez (6).
Man of the match: David Silva.
The hosts went ahead 44 seconds after kicking off their first ever home Champions League fixture. Kerem Demirbay slotted the ball through for Belfodil in the area and the striker swept home past Ederson to send the Rhein-Neckar Arena into raptures.
But their enthusiam was curbed seven minutes later as Aguero equalised. It was a sublime ball from David Silva as he played Leroy Sane in, and the German decided against going for goal himself as he cut the ball back for Aguero. The Argentine then found space before scoring from inside the six-yard box.
Man City were quickly on the hunt for a second goal and could have taken the lead in the 16th minute. They broke down the field at speed with Raheem Sterling getting himself into the box with only Baumann to beat, but the ball came off his heel before going wide.
Hoffenheim made three changes with Joshua Brenet, Kerem Demirbay and Joelinton coming into the XI. Pep Guardiola switched two players, with Vincent Kompany and Ilkay Gundogan starting the game in place of Oleksandr Zinchenko and Bernardo Silva.
The Hoffenheim captain made another superb, leaping save in the 35th minute as Aguero sent a marvellous, curling effort his way. Four minutes later, and Ederson was in action at the other end as Belfodil took advantage of a poor back pass from Aymeric Laporte to burst into the area, but the Man City goalkeeper got down low to deny him a second of the game.
The second half was a cagier affair with fewer chances, but City should have been awarded a penalty in the 74th minute. Sane collected a long ball and when in the area, had his feet swept from beneath him by Baumann, but no spot-kick was given.
But they grabbed a winner with three minutes of normal time to play. Bernardo Silva delivered a superb cross into the area that Stefan Posch failed to deal with, allowing David Silva to nip in and claim the winner.
- Manchester City are unbeaten in their last six Champions League games against German opponents (W5 D1).
- Hoffenheim have won just one of their previous 10 matches in European competition (D3 L6).
- Manchester City's Sergio Aguero became just the second player to score in five consecutive away Champions League appearances for an English team after Ruud van Nistelrooy for Man Utd in 2003.
- Hoffenheim's Ishak Belfodil netted after 43 seconds; the quickest goal scored against an English team in the Champions League since Stephan El Shaarawy vs Chelsea in October 2017 (39 seconds). It was also the quickest goal Man City have conceded in the competition.
Man of the match - David Silva
It was not just his well-taken goal that sees David Silva earn the man-of-the-match award, as he pulled the strings throughout in what was a tough encounter for City.
He played the initial ball that set up the opening goal with a sublime pass for Sane, and continued to see his team-mates forward with wonderful passes. The finishing may have been lacking, but he continues to show his importance to Man City this season.
What would VAR have changed?
UEFA announced last week that they would start using VAR in the Champions League next season and there was one big decision that would have benefited - the penalty that was not given. There are not too many ways to dress it up as it was a clear foul from Baumann on Sane. The referee and his team would have surely seen their decision overturned if VAR was available.
Hoffenheim will take on Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga on Sunday, and will next be in Champions League action on Tuesday 23 October when they travel to Lyon. It is a huge game for Man City on Sunday - live on Sky Sports - as they travel to Liverpool in the Premier League. Their next Champions League outing is also on October 23 when they travel to Shakhtar Donetsk.