showdown | 

Kevin De Bruyne's message for Liverpool after Champions League quarter-final win

De Bruyne struck 20 minutes from time as Manchester City grabbed a slender advantage in their Champions League quarter-final against Atletico Madrid.

Kevin De Bruyne celebrates after scoring their side's first goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final Leg One match between Manchester City and Atletico Madrid. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Kevin Palmer

Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne wasted little time in turning his attention to Liverpool after scoring the winner in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final against Atletico Madrid.

De Bruyne struck 20 minutes from time as Manchester City grabbed a slender advantage in their Champions League quarter-final against Atletico Madrid.

The Belgian playmaker fired home from a tight angle after Phil Foden came off the bench to stunning effect in a tense and tight first leg at the Etihad Stadium.

Atletico were their usual dogged, defensive selves for most of the game and frustrated City despite the hosts’ dominance of possession.

Yet the introduction of Foden as part of a triple substitution by Pep Guardiola in the 68th minute paid almost immediate dividends.

Within moments he had slipped in De Bruyne with a delicate through ball and he finished firmly to put City in control heading into next week’s second leg in the Spanish capital.

Now De Bruyne is looking forward to Sunday's Premier League showdown with Liverpool, as he suggested both sides will be ready for a potential title decider.

"It is five days until Sunday," De Bruyne told BT Sport. "Both teams have played tonight. It is a big game and everybody is looking forward to it including the players."

De Bruyne also gave his verdict on the win against Atletico, as the Spanish side frustrated Pep Guardiola's side for long periods.

"The first half was tight in the second half we had a couple of chances and it was good that we took one," he added.

"I made the run and Phil (Foden) found me perfectly, I needed to stay composed and luckily I did. It's very hard. They played with almost five at the back and with five in midfield. I recommend anyone that says anything [about us], that they try playing against that on the training ground."

"We have to stay composed and don’t try to get into their action. It is the way they play. One nil is one nil. I expect similar over there. If the game is tight they will have to attack a little bit more."

Guardiola saluted his team after they found a way to break down a resolute Atletico defensive set up as he stated: "We played an incredible top side who are difficult to face but it is a good result. We had chances to score a second and third.

"The guys were playing well but we knew that Gabriel (Jesus) and Phil (Foden) have a special energy and Jack (Grealish) has the quality to keep the ball. Yeah, today the manager was so clever.

"When we make a sub it is because we think it can be a bit better. It works sometimes but other times it doesn't.

"It is not easy to face a team with a lot of experience in this tournament. We will go there to score and try and win again."

Today's Headlines

More Soccer

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

WatchMore Videos