Reports of rampant racism emerged from Atletico fans on tour at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday night following Manchester City’s 1-0 win over the Spanish club in the Champions League. On Tuesday, Atletico Madrid lost to Premier League club Manchester City in their Champions League first-leg tie at the Etihad Stadium. Still, Spain made the front pages ahead of the weekend for reasons unrelated to the flight. On Tuesday, their supporters were photographed to be paying Nazi salutes during the first leg of their quarter-final match at Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium.
UEFA holds clubs responsible for fans’ actions in stadiums and can penalise Atlético by forcing them to play a future home match behind closed doors or in a partially filled stadium. Adding to Atlético Madrid’s shocking behaviour, there have been new reports of the CEO being attacked and away fans spitting at Manchester City fans in the lower level of the Etihad Stadium. Still, these allegations have yet to be confirmed by the police or the media.
Manchester City dominated possession and chances in the first 45 minutes in a match between defending Premier League Champions and La Liga champions. Atlético Madrid enjoyed defending and shooting at half-time as the first half ended goalless. Returning to Manchester after knocking out Manchester United in the previous round, Atlético were usually resolute during the first half, hungry for possession and the “City of Chance”. As you would expect, the “citizens” mostly have the ball, but so far, the goal of “Atletico” is not visible.
Kevin de Bruyne set the scoring for Manchester City on Tuesday night and was one goal clear of Wanda Metropolitano on Tuesday night. Manchester City is leading 1-0 ahead of the second leg in Madrid in the next few weeks, thanks to a 70th-minute goal from Kevin de Bruynes. After his team’s 1-0 win, Kevin De Bruynes said they could be happy with this win and head to Madrid next week, confident they can do their job and reach the semi-finals. De Bruyne credits the appearance of Phil Fodens in the second half with Manchester City, in the end, helping to unleash Atlético Madrid’s profits.
A change in Atlético Madrid’s approach could be more suitable for Manchester City than having to beat a group of five defenders. Phil Foden’s absence from a match of this magnitude seems like a huge deal, although Atlético’s gruelling schedule may indicate that City is on City’s immediate agenda. Manchester City wanted a more significant lead, but they knew they would most likely score in the second leg, so if they could show the same defensive performance, they would reach the semi-finals for the second year in a row. The beat gives Pep Guardiola’s team an edge ahead of the second leg in the coming weeks in Madrid.