Champions League

Stones stars as City hammer Feyenoord

2017-09-14 05:36
John Stones (Getty Images)

Rotterdam - Manchester City thrashed Dutch champions Feyenoord 4-0 as defender John Stones scored twice to get Pep Guardiola's side off to a flying Champions League start on Wednesday.

Stones headed home on two minutes after a sublime chip by skipper David Silva, and after Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus had made the win safe, the England centre-back capped off the evening with a second powerful header for a memorable brace.

"The most important thing and what pleased me the most (about the win) is the way in which we did it," said City coach Guardiola.

"We did not play back... We were aggressive... We had the legs to run on the side, especially on the right and created the chances. Enough to win the game comfortably."

To complicate matters for City however, in the other Group F game, fancied Napoli were beaten 2-1 at Shakhtar Donetsk.

In Rotterdam, City tore Feyenoord to pieces as hard-working midfielders Bernardo Silva and Kevin De Bruyne punched holes in the home defence, which was in all sorts of trouble on a stormy evening at a packed De Kuip.

Aguero made it 2-0 after 10 minutes when he hammered in a half-volley from a sublime cross from Kyle Walker, which flew past goalkeeper Brad Jones.

The Argentinian striker has now scored 172 goals for Manchester City and is only five short of former England international Eric Brook's all-time record of 177.

City continued their merciless onslaught, giving the hosts very little space to create chances while continuing to threaten with lightning-fast attacks down the right flank.

The weather did little to improve the fanatical Feyenoord supporters' mood, as the fans began jeering the players each time the ball was passed back to Jones, who had a busy evening.

The keeper blocked a blistering shot from Aguero which rebounded for Benjamin Mendy to take another shot, bouncing off the Australian again.

Jones could not hold on however and an unmarked Jesus performed the simple task of booting the ball into the back on the net for a debut Champions League goal.

Feyenoord regained some composure in the second half, but it did not take the visitors long to find the back of the net again, this time in the form of a blistering header by Stones from a finely-floated De Bruyne corner.

"John Stones, there is no doubt about his quality," Guardiola said.

"But he knows what the gap is to improve as a football player, he has to win the duels. When he will be able to do that he will become an exceptional centre defender."

Feyenoord sorely missed injured Danish international striker Nicolai Jorgensen.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst's home side never really got going, with most shots flying wide of goal and doing very little to bother City keeper Ederson.

Ederson bravely took to the field after being injured in the face over the weekend following a collision with Liverpool's Sadio Mane.

The Brazilian sported eight stitches, a head guard and a special neck brace.

Some Feyenoord supporters started leaving the stadium before the final whistle, but most fans continued to chant slogans around the stadium as their team's return to the Champions League for the first time in 15 years ended in miserable fashion.

Van Bronckhorst conceded that his players were outgunned.

"Yes, I think so," Van Bronckhorst said when asked whether he thought Manchester City could win the Champions League.

"As I said before, it's a very good team. They have a lot of qualities, a lot of speed, they have everything to be a tough team.

"Today we were not ready for them."

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Fixtures
Tuesday, 26 September 2017
Sevilla v Maribor, Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan 20:45
Manchester City v Shakhtar Donetsk, Etihad Stadium 20:45
APOEL v Tottenham Hotspur, Neo GSP 20:45
Spartak Moskva v Liverpool, Otkrytiye Arena 20:45
Borussia Dortmund v Real Madrid, Signal-Iduna-Park 20:45
Monaco v Porto, Stade Louis II. 20:45
Napoli v Feyenoord, Stadio San Paolo 20:45
Besiktas v RB Leipzig, Vodafone Stadyumu 20:45
Wednesday, 27 September 2017
Qarabag v Roma, Bakı Olimpiya Stadionu 18:00
Juventus v Olympiakos Piraeus, Allianz Stadium 20:45
Sporting CP v Barcelona, Estadio Jose Alvalade 20:45
Atletico Madrid v Chelsea, Estadio Wanda Metropolitano 20:45
PSG v Bayern Munchen, Parc des Princes 20:45
Basel v Benfica, St. Jakob-Park 20:45
Anderlecht v Celtic, Stade Constant Vanden Stock 20:45
CSKA Moskva v Manchester United, VEB Arena 20:45
Tuesday, 17 October 2017
Real Madrid v Tottenham Hotspur, Estadio Santiago Bernabeu 20:45
Manchester City v Napoli, Etihad Stadium 20:45
Maribor v Liverpool, Ljudski vrt 20:45
APOEL v Borussia Dortmund, Neo GSP 20:45
Spartak Moskva v Sevilla, Otkrytiye Arena 20:45
RB Leipzig v Porto, Red Bull Arena 20:45
Monaco v Besiktas, Stade Louis II. 20:45
Feyenoord v Shakhtar Donetsk, Stadion Feijenoord 20:45
Wednesday, 18 October 2017
Qarabag v Atletico Madrid, Bakı Olimpiya Stadionu 18:00
Juventus v Sporting CP, Allianz Stadium 20:45
Bayern Munchen v Celtic, Allianz-Arena 20:45
Barcelona v Olympiakos Piraeus, Camp Nou 20:45
Benfica v Manchester United, Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica (da Luz) 20:45
Anderlecht v PSG, Stade Constant Vanden Stock 20:45
Chelsea v Roma, Stamford Bridge 20:45
CSKA Moskva v Basel, VEB Arena 20:45
Tuesday, 31 October 2017
Celtic v Bayern Munchen, Celtic Park 21:45
Sporting CP v Juventus, Estadio Jose Alvalade 21:45
Atletico Madrid v Qarabag, Estadio Wanda Metropolitano 21:45
Manchester United v Benfica, Old Trafford 21:45
PSG v Anderlecht, Parc des Princes 21:45
Basel v CSKA Moskva, St. Jakob-Park 21:45
Olympiakos Piraeus v Barcelona, Stadio Georgios Karaiskaki 21:45
Roma v Chelsea, Stadio Olimpico 21:45
Wednesday, 01 November 2017
Besiktas v Monaco, Vodafone Stadyumu 19:00
Liverpool v Maribor, Anfield 21:45
Porto v RB Leipzig, Estadio Do Dragao 21:45
Sevilla v Spartak Moskva, Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan 21:45
Shakhtar Donetsk v Feyenoord, Oblasny SportKomplex Metalist 21:45
Borussia Dortmund v APOEL, Signal-Iduna-Park 21:45
Napoli v Manchester City, Stadio San Paolo 21:45
Tottenham Hotspur v Real Madrid, Wembley Stadium 21:45
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