The Dominion Post

Man City clinch Charity Shield after shootout

- Rob Harris

After completing a clean sweep of domestic trophies last season, Manchester City opened the new campaign by lifting the Community Shield following a shootout victory over Liverpool yesterday.

City netted all five penalties – the last by Gabriel Jesus – and backup goalkeeper Claudio Bravo made a key save on his first appearance in a year to deny Georginio Wijnaldum’s attempt in a 5-4 shootout win after the traditiona­l curtain-raiser to the English domestic season ended 1-1 in regulation time.

‘‘It was a good test for both teams,’’ City manager Pep Guardiola said. ‘‘It’s nice for the players to realise what they will face this season. At this level the difference is nothing.’’

On the field, perhaps, between the teams. Not in terms of trophy hauls in recent years.

City opened last season by lifting the Shield and went on to win the FA Cup, League Cup and Premier League – edging Liverpool to England’s top title by a single point.

Liverpool, who won the Champions League for a sixth time last season, won only one of seven pre-season games before losing to City at Wembley Stadium.

Raheem Sterling took 12 minutes to pick up where he left off for City at Wembley in May when he completed a 5-0 victory over Watford in the FA Cup final.

Kevin De Bruyne nodded across to David Silva, who flicked the ball on for Sterling to turn in from close range. It was Sterling’s first goal against the club he left four years ago and he didn’t hold back in celebratin­g in front of the Liverpool fans closest to the goal.

Liverpool were not only exposed in defence but wasteful up front and twice denied by the goal frame after the break when Virgil van Dijk hit the bar and Mohamed Salah struck the post.

But Bravo was beaten in the 77th minute when two defenders combined. Van Dijk brought down Jordan Henderson’s free kick and volleyed across to Joel Matip who headed low into the net.

Liverpool were denied a winner in regulation time when Salah’s header beat Bravo but Kyle Walker scrambled back to clear from the goal-line.

‘‘It was a really powerful performanc­e,’’ Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said. ‘‘Obviously in the second half we were in charge and full of desire. We didn’t do it, but at least we got the equaliser so it’s how it is. Penalties, a bit of luck is involved and one goalkeeper’s save decides it, but I can’t be disappoint­ed today.’’

 ??  ?? City’s John Stones hugs goalkeeper Claudio Bravo after the shootout.
City’s John Stones hugs goalkeeper Claudio Bravo after the shootout.

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