Man City 6-3 Leicester: Player ratings as Cityzens survive comeback scare

Craig Vickers
Dias and Laporte celebrate
Dias and Laporte celebrate / Chris Brunskill/GettyImages

Man City survived an inspired second half comeback from Leicester in a breathtaking 6-3 victory over the Foxes in the Premier League.

The Cityzens were ruthless from the outset, opening the scoring inside four minutes when Fernandinho picked out Kevin De Bruyne with a lovely clipped ball. The Belgian made no mistake, controlling it expertly before biding his time to laser a left-footed strike into the bottom corner.

Leicester were threatening on the counter-attacking as they went close via a James Maddison free-kick, but that was before Pep Guardiola's side had doubled their advantage from the penalty spot.

Aymeric Laporte went down in the penalty box under the attentions of Youri Tielemans from a corner and when referee Chris Kavanagh was advised to visit the pitchside monitor the infringment was clear as day. Riyad Mahrez stepped up to fire his resulting spot-kick into the top corner.

Only 20 minutes had elapsed when the hosts put the contest beyond doubt (or so we thought). Working the ball effectively down the right, Joao Cancelo's fizzing cross across the six yard box was palmed tamely into the path of Ilkay Gundogan by Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and the German made no mistake from point-blank range.

Leicester were reeling, and City poured more salt into the visitors' wounds when they added a fourth just four minutes later. Again, Tielemans was the culprit as he brought down Raheem Sterling inside the penalty area with a lazy challenge, before the England international grabbed the ball and dispatched the penalty himself.

The home side ought to have added a fifth in the 34th minute when Sterling volleyed towards goal after a gorgeous move involving Oleksandr Zinchenko and Bernardo Silva, but Schmeichel was equal to the winger's effort.

Mahrez threatened with an effort after the interval, but it was Leicester who pulled a goal back on the counter-attack nine minutes after the restart.

Aymeric Laporte slipped in defence as Leicester worked the ball forward and when James Maddison was liberated by Kelechi Iheanacho he cooly slotted his finish beyond Ederson.

And it was no mere consolation for the Foxes as Ademola Lookman grabbed a second shortly after. Iheanacho turned provider was once again with an equisitely timed through ball and the winger made no mistake one-on-one against the City goalkeeper.

Memories of Newcastle's famous second half comeback were then evoked when Leicester netted their third of the half. Maddison's rasping strike was only tipped onto the crossbar by Ederson before Iheanacho followed in smartly to bundle the ball over the goal line.

However, Guardiola's side took a fire extinguisher to Leicester's hopes immediately after. Laporte rose highest at the back post from Mahrez's corner and powered his header into the far corner to inject a sigh of relief into the Etihad crowd.

Much to relief of the City faithful, Sterling then put the contest beyond doubt four minutes from time when he was on hand to applying the finishing touches to Ruben Dias' header from a corner from six yards out.

Here's how both teams rated.

Man City player ratings

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

Ruben Dias
Dias remonstrates with the referee / Alex Pantling/GettyImages

Ederson (GK) - 5/10 - Conceded three times, but he would be forgiven for bemoaning his side's defending.

Joao Cancelo (RB) - 7/10 -
Chose his moments to overlap Mahrez on the flank, delivering with consistent quality into the danger area.

Ruben Dias (CB) - 6/10 -
Quite the contrast in activity in either half. Barely having to break a sweat in the opening period before being bombarded in the second half.

Aymeric Laporte (CB) - 7/10 -
Brought down by Youri Tielemans for Mahrez's first half penalty, with his distribution out of defence also particularly effective. Unfortunate slip for Maddison's goal but he made amends to grab City's fifth.

Oleksandr Zinchenko (LB) - 6/10 -
Displayed his vast array of passes from his inverted position, although he didn't cover himself in glory for Lookman's strike.

2. Midfielders

Ilkay Guendogan, Raheem Sterling
Gundogan celebrates his goal / Alex Pantling/GettyImages

Fernandinho (CM) - 8/10 - Still a class act at 36 years old, with his constant switches of play proving dizzying for Leicester.

Bernardo Silva (CM) - 6/10 -
His slaloming runs were on full display, although he didn't threaten the penalty area as much as he has done this season.

Ilkay Gundogan (CM) - 6/10 -
Couldn't have asked for an easier scoring opportunity for City's third, reaping the rewards for his ability to find space inside the penalty box.

3. Forwards

Raheem Sterling
Sterling celebrates / James Williamson - AMA/GettyImages

Riyad Mahrez (RW) - 5/10 - Held his width on the right really effectively to create space for De Bruyne infield.

Kevin De Bruyne (ST) - 7/10 - Fits like a glove into this false nine role, finishing with aplomb to begin the Man City procession.

Raheem Sterling (LW) - 8/10 - Looks back to his best, giving Marc Albrighton a torrid time in the first half and grabbing a couple of goals.

4. Substitutes

Phil Foden (ST) - N/A

Leicester player ratings

5. Goalkeeper & defenders

Marc Albrighton
Albrighton had a tough afternoon against Sterling / Alex Pantling/GettyImages

Kasper Schmeichel (GK) - 3/10 - Made a few decent stops, but his error for Gundogan's goal typifies his struggles this season.

Marc Albrighton (RB) - 3/10 - A chastening afternoon against a confident Raheem Sterling.

Daniel Amartey (CB) - 4/10 - Looked vulnerable in his defensive duels, but it's understandable given the quality of City's attackers.

Jannik Vestergaard (CB) - 4/10 - If ever an afternoon summed up why Rodgers has been reluctant to use the Denmark international as part of a four-man defence.

Luke Thomas (LB) - 4/10 - Cancelo's movement gave him problems and he couldn't impact the game going forward.

6. Midfielders

James Maddison
Maddison celebrates / James Williamson - AMA/GettyImages

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall (CM) - 5/10 - A quiet afternoon chasing Man City shadows.

Youri Tielemans (CM) - 3/10 - Endured a nightmare afternoon, conceding two penalties and he can have no complaints over either.

James Maddison (CM) - 8/10 - A performance which will make Gareth Southgate sit up and take notice. Drove Leicester forward when all hope appeared lost at half time.

7. Forwards

Ademola Lookman, Kelechi Iheanacho
Lookman and Iheanacho celebrate / James Williamson - AMA/GettyImages

Ayoze Perez (RW) - 3/10 - An effective outlet down the right hand side during the early exchanges, but he was hooked at half time.

Kelechi Iheanacho (ST) - 8/10 - A threat in transition, grabbing two assists and a goal in a productive second half.

Ademola Lookman (LW) - 7/10 - Looked very bright on the break, taking his goal really well in the second half.

8. Substitutes

Timothy Castagne (RB) - 6/10 - Offered Leicester more defensive protection.

Hamza Choudhury (CM) - N/A