Livescore Thursday, April 25

Rodri may not have given a glowing appraisal of his performance in the UEFA Champions League final, but the Manchester City midfielder made the difference.

It wasn’t the first time the Spaniard has produced a hugely important goal for his club — after scoring City’s equaliser as they beat Aston Villa to clinch the title on the final day of the 2021/22 season, Rodri has delivered again on numerous occasions in his fourth year at the club.

It will be tough to top his strike against Inter Milan which secured the club’s first Champions League and a historic treble, Pep Guardiola’s side adding Europe’s flagship club trophy to their FA Cup and Carabao Cup triumphs.

Let’s take a look back at the times when Rodri’s knack for timeliness in 2022-23.

MORE: Man City complete treble

Leeds 1-3 Man City: A Premier League breakthrough

Erling Haaland took the headlines for becoming the fastest player to reach 20 Premier League goals with a second-half double at the end of 2022, but it was Rodri who made the breakthrough against stubborn Leeds.

City were still five points behind leaders Arsenal at this stage, and a slip-up could have changed the course of the season. Rodri’s smart finish paved the way for Haaland’s feat.

Man City 3-1 Villa: Rodri quick off the mark

Needing to win to keep the heat on Arsenal, City hosted a Villa side rejuvenated under Unai Emery in February 2023.

The tension was significantly eased by Rodri’s cool head, nodding Riyad Mahrez’s cross in to put City ahead after four minutes.

Man City 3-0 Bayern: Sweet strike stuns six-time champions

The first leg of City’s Champions League quarter-final was billed as a tough showdown with Thomas Tuchel’s Bundesliga leaders.

Against heavyweights of the competition, Rodri’s magnificent left-footed drive gave the hosts the lead in the 27th minute of a tie they would win 4-1 on aggregate.

Man City 1-0 Inter Milan: Rodri the Champions League winner

When City can’t find a way through, reliable Rodri can be their saviour — and this time his goal won the Champions League.

With about 20 minutes left in the final against a tricky Inter side in Istanbul, Rodri received Bernardo Silva’s pass and rifled in the only goal of the game with a cool finish.

Why did Rodri not play in 2021 Champions League final?

Guardiola received criticism after City lost the 2020/21 final 1-0 to Chelsea in a game they started without Rodri or Fernandinho, who many considered their first-choice defensive midfielders.

“If I tell you privately the reason why I took the decision in that moment, you could say it was right,” Guardiola said before the 2023 final.

“But it is simple: if I lose, I am wrong. If I win, I am right. You have to accept that in this business. It was a tight game and in many things we were better than them [in 2021], but we lost.

“Would I do something different now? Maybe, but that doesn’t count.”

Read the full article here

Leave A Reply