The Premier League side were outclassed at the Melbourne Cricket Ground as goals from Karim Benzema, Pepe and Denis Cheryshev adding to the Portuguese star’s effort
Manchester City were comprehensively beaten 4-1 by Real Madrid in an entertaining International Champions Cup encounter in Melbourne. Some superb, attractive attacking play gave Madrid a two-goal lead within the space of four minutes midway through the first half as Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo struck past Joe Hart in front of a record crowd of 99,382 – the largest attendance for a football match at the MCG. Pepe then headed home unmarked from a corner late in the first half before Yaya Toure got one back for Manuel Pellegrini’s men with a penalty in stoppage time just before the break. City could not push further against Madrid, however, with Denis Cheryshev burying a fourth goal for the Spaniards when he met Isco’s cross in the 73rd minute. Fabian Delph, who signed from Aston Villa for £8 million earlier in July, made his City debut but lasted just 18 minutes before being stretchered off, appearing to have to injured his left thigh as he tackled Luka Modric from behind. City manager Manuel Pellegrini named a central-defensive pairing with a combined age of 36 and Cameron Humphreys and Jason Denayer’s lack of first-team experience saw Madrid’s stellar front three of Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Benzema thrive in the first half.
Madrid coach Rafael Benitez started the likes of Toni Kroos and Modric alongside Ronaldo and Co. in close to his best XI, while Manuel Pellegrini included David Silva, Raheem Sterling and Samir Nasri. Toure and Ramos provided an early scare for both managers when they collided nastily but both recovered. Benzema opened the scoring with an impressive hooked volley over his shoulder from Bale’s cross in the 21st minute and Ronaldo made it 2-0 four minutes later from Toni Kroos’ long ball. It got worse for City too, as Pepe found space in the area to head a corner past Joe Hart just before half-time, although a dubious penalty given against Sergio Ramos allowed Toure to make it 3-1 at the break. A sharp one-two between Isco and Ronaldo saw the ball in City’s net again early in the second period but the latter was offside in the build-up, while Raphael Varane headed wide when left free on the hour mark. But Real eventually got the fourth goal that their dominance deserved when Isco teed up Cheryshev for a tap-in.
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