Man City 0-0 Sporting Lisbon: Five things you might have missed from the Etihad

The goalless draw means Manchester City move onto the last eight of the Champions League.

Manchester City’s 0-0 draw with Sporting Lisbon won’t live long in the memory for fans of either side, even if the hosts managed to move onto the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

The 5-0 aggregate win over two legs demonstrates the gulf in class between the sides, with City winning so commandingly in Lisbon and then coasting for 90 minutes at the Etihad.

But even on a less-than-entertaining night, there were a few things that might have passed spectators by, especially with many likely to have switched over to watch Real Madrid v Paris Saint-Germain after a stale first half in Manchester.

Kids are alright

CJ Egan-Riley started for City on Wednesday, and looked more than comfortable in just his second senior appearance for the club, and even raised a few cheers from the home fans with a moment of skill in the corner during the latter stages of the game.

CJ Egan-Riley played well in just his second-ever game for City.  Credit: Getty.
CJ Egan-Riley played well in just his second-ever game for City.  Credit: Getty.
CJ Egan-Riley played well in just his second-ever game for City. Credit: Getty.

That was his maiden Champions League appearance, much as it was for James McAtee and Luke Mbete, both of whom came on in the second half.

It’s good for Pep Guardiola to know he can turn to these inexperienced youngsters when needed, and Wednesday’s game will help further their development.

Another player who featured in Europe’s elite competition was veteran goalkeeper Scott Carson. The 36-year-old was introduced for the final knockings of the encounter and made just his second appearance in the tournament.

Carson’s eventful cameo

The shot stopper was only on the pitch for 17 minutes, but almost immediately he was forced into action when he came out to deny space for Paulinho to attack into.

Carson actually collided with the Sporting striker and needed treatment, leading to fears that he would be immediately taken off. However, thankfully he was fine to continue.

The former Leeds United and Liverpool man was also serenaded by the home supporters when he came on, with chants of ‘England’s No.1’.

There were fears Carson would have to come off within minutes of coming on. Credit: Getty.
There were fears Carson would have to come off within minutes of coming on. Credit: Getty.
There were fears Carson would have to come off within minutes of coming on. Credit: Getty.

Two centuries for City

That was actually the Sky Blues’ 100th game in the Champions League, although they will have faced few less entertaining encounters in any competition.

Another who played in the Champions League for the 100th time was Fernandinho. That showing at the Etihad was the 70th occasion he’s featured in the tournament for City, in addition to 30 matches for Shakhtar Donetsk.

Guardiola joins exclusive squad

The aggregate win means Guardiola has now made it to the last eight of the Champions League 12 times in his career with Barcelona, Bayern Munich and City.

Pep Guardiola moves onto the quarter-finals again. Credit: Getty
Pep Guardiola moves onto the quarter-finals again. Credit: Getty
Pep Guardiola moves onto the quarter-finals again. Credit: Getty

That’s a record no-one can better, with the experienced Carlo Ancelotti and Sir Alex Ferguson achieving the same number.

Speaking of rubbing shoulders with the elite, City were joined by Ancelotti’s Real Madrid in the quarter-finals on Wednesday, after they eliminated PSG.

Liverpool and Bayern qualified the night before, meaning the line-up for the last eight is stacked with top sides, even though only four have secured their passage so far.

Bernardo’s hostile welcome

It’s rare to hear a player booed in his home stadium, but that’s the reception Bernardo Silva received when the sides were called out before the game.

Obviously those jeers weren’t coming from the home supporters, rather the away, who aren’t particularly fond of the midfielder given his ties with Lisbon rivals Benfica.

Silva did nothing to ingratiate himself either, with a brace in the away leg last month.

City’s No.20 enjoyed a good first half at the Etihad but was taken off at half-time, presumably to save him for upcoming matches.