European champs lift to lay waste to Manchester City
REAL Madrid dazzled a record football crowd at the MCG last night on the way to stunning Manchester City with a 4- 1 thumping.
First- half goals from Karim Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo and Pepe won the contest for Real in front of a crowd of 99,382.
City found a reply through a Yaya Toure penalty, but a second- half goal finish from Denis Cherych- ev put paid comeback.
After a dire first- up display against Roma a week earlier, Real produced a virtuoso performance to claim the inaugural International Champions Cup Australia.
In front of a record MCG crowd for a football match, Real’s forward line, led by Ronaldo, made mincemeat of City’s two young centrebacks. Both sides fielded strong starting line- ups, except for 16- year- old Camer-
City on Humphreys and 20year- old Jason Denayer at the heart of City’s defence.
It didn’t take long for Real to put them to work, although City had the first major chance.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side were denied a cast- iron penalty on 10 minutes, when Real keeper Keilor Navas attempted to clean up a Sergio Ramos mistake but instead elbowed Toure in the head.
themselves behind shortly after. Gareth Bale’s centre found Benzema, who volleyed expertly on 21 minutes.
It was 2- 0 three minutes later when Ronaldo brought under control Toni Kroos’ pinpoint long- ball before volleying home with his second touch. The Portuguese star celebrated in front of the Punt Road end after City goalkeeper Joe Hart palmed it over the line.
A rout was on when Isco’s curling corner found Pepe, who sent a bullet header past Hart to give Los Merengues a 3- 0 lead on 43 minutes.
But a dubious decision against Ramos gave City a penalty in the last minute before the break. Replays showed Ramos’ handball was preceded by another from Raheem Sterling, but in any case Toure’s goal made up for the missing whistle earlier in the half.
Pellegrini will rue an injury to Fabian Delph.