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Champions League recap: Manchester City in cruise control

Pep Guardiola's side seemed to barely break a sweat in making it to the last 16.

Watch all Man. City's group stage goals
Watch all Man. City's group stage goals

Unbeaten in the group stage, Manchester City have had a comfortable journey to the UEFA Champions League round of 16.

UEFA.tv: group stage review


Campaign so far

Group G winners: W5 D1 L0 F13 A1
Top scorer: Ferran Torres (4)

21/10: Man. City 3-1 Porto (Agüero 20pen, Gündoğan 65, Ferran Torres 73)
27/10: Marseille 0-3 Man. City (Ferran Torres 18, Gündoğan 76, Sterling 81)
03/11: Man. City 3-0 Olympiacos (Ferran Torres 12, Jesus 81, João Cancelo 90)
25/11: Olympiacos 0-1 Man. City (Foden 36)
01/12: Porto 0-0 Man. City
09/12
: Man. City 3-0 Marseille (Ferran Torres 48, Agüero 77, Álvaro 90og)

Their campaign in ten words: Unusually inconsistent in the Premier League, familiarly formidable in Europe.

UEFA.com reporter’s view

City progressed as group winners for a fourth season running; they also did so with assurance and with two games to spare. A run of clean sheets was another cause for satisfaction given the defensive failings which have cost them in this competition in the past, so too the contributions of new boys Rúben Dias and Ferran Torres. That said, the failure to convert more of their many chances created is something to address.
Simon Hart, Man. City reporter

What we’ve learned

Highlights: Marseille 0-3 Manchester City (2 mins)
Highlights: Marseille 0-3 Manchester City (2 mins)

Detractors could say that City's path through the group stage was not a particularly difficult one: a cut above their opponents on paper, they were the least-fouled side during the competition's autumn phase, with just 40 infringements against them, and they conceded only seven corners. Still, Pep Guardiola can be pleased that they avoided any drama and will be encouraged that their goals were evenly shared out; Ferran Torres was the top scorer with four, albeit none of his strikes were decisive.

Squad changes

In: none
Out: Taylor Harwood-Bellis, Cieran Slicker

Key stats

• City had the most impressive defensive record of any team in this season's group stage, conceding just once.

• A Guardiola side drew 0-0 in the UEFA Champions League for the first time in 59 games when Manchester City played at Porto on Matchday 5. The previous occasion had been when his Bayern team were held by Shakhtar Donetsk in February 2015.

Classic Man. City Champions League goals
Classic Man. City Champions League goals

• Ferran Torres (20 years and 248 days) became the third-youngest player to score in four consecutive UEFA Champions League games, after Kylian Mbappé (18 years and 120 days) and Erling Braut Haaland (19 years and 107 days), when he struck against Olympiacos on Matchday 3.

Who’s in charge?

In 11 seasons as a first-team boss, Guardiola has lifted eight league titles, but the last of his two managerial UEFA Champions League winners' medals came in 2011.