It’s not every day we look at how the press abroad grade players, but considering what happened on Tuesday night at the Etihad, we decided to make an exception with Manchester City’s performance against Monaco.
Coming away 5-3 winners after Monaco seemed to collapse in the last 15 minutes, some of Pep Guardiola’s men will have returned home far happier than others.
L’Equipe, who are known to rather critical, were full of praise for Manchester City’s front three, and with five goals between them, you can understand why.
A ‘decisive’ Sergio Agüero, given an 8/10, gets most of the attention due to the importance of his goals, both equalisers when Monaco took the lead at 2-1 and 3-2, and his selfless assist for Leroy Sané to make it 5-3 rounded off an impressive display.
Even the French newspaper think he should have been awarded a penalty in the first half instead of receiving a yellow card for simulation.
Both Raheem Sterling and Leroy Sané were also given 8s for their performances, while Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva, supporting the front trio, were handed 7s.
Solid performances from Yaya Touré (apart from that Bernardo Silva nutmeg), Bacary Sagna and Willy Caballero (handed an easy penalty save by Falcao) saw them receive a very respectable 6.
However, the three remaining players (John Stones, Fernandinho and Nicolas Otamendi) will want to forget Tuesday night altogether.
The young English defender, even with his goal, was given a 3/10 by L’Equipe, with his defensive display branded as ‘very mediocre’, while his Brazilian teammate’s display as a makeshift left-back was ‘anything but a triumph’, especially on the first goal.
As for Nicolas Otamendi, Vincent Duluc, who wrote the article, doesn’t hold back.
Defending ‘like a rookie’ for Mbappé’s goal, the Argentinian defender was at fault for two of Monaco’s three goals, and ‘reminded everyone why Guardiola regularly prefers to play Kolarov in his stead’.