Manchester City and Napoli played out an entertaining 1-1 draw in their opening Champions League match Wednesday night. Edinson Cavani opened the scoring after a quick counter attack in the 69th minute, while Aleksandar Kolarov equalised for City from a 74th minute free kick.
City dominated play for much of the first half, with Napoli still threatening on the break. City created the majority of opportunities, however.
Samir Nasri had the first half chance of the day, but his shot went just wide. City also created half openings for Dzeko and Aguero.
Dzeko then almost opened the scoring in the 13th minute. The Bosnian ran forward before passing to Aguero. The Argentine held the ball up and passed back to Dzeko, who shot powerfully past the left post.
Despite struggling to compete in the opening period, Napoli almost opened the scoring in the 17th minute. Lavezzi controlled the ball outside the City box, opened up his body and struck a powerful shot against the bar.
Both teams threatened without creating any real chances in the next 15 minutes. Yaya Toure almost ended the deadlock in the 34th minute after some brilliant counter attacking football, however.
Toure broke forward before sliding the ball through to Aguero. The Argentine held the ball up well, leaving a defender on the ground. Aguero then passed back to Toure, who thundered a shot against the bar.
The Italian side came more into the game in the second period, with Lavezzi, Hamsik and Cavani showing a lot of ability on the ball.
In the 50th minute, Vincent Kompany saved City from falling behind. Zuniga skilfully beat Zabaleta before sending a cross to the back post. Hamsik struck a calculated volley past Hart and towards the left hand post, but Kompany managed to clear off the line.
City continued to threaten and Lescott headed over from a free kick, while Dzeko had a shot saved by De Sanctis and Nasri shot wide from outside the box.
Napoli had another great chance in the 66th minute. The Italian side broke well and had four attackers against three City defenders. Dzemaili picked out Hamsik, but his shot was well blocked by Zabaleta.
Napoli took the lead in the 69th minute after a great counter attacking move. Maggio intercepted a pass and ran forty yards into the City half. Dzemaili and Cavani made runs to either side of the two City central defenders. Maggio passed to Cavani, who slipped the ball through Joe Hart’s legs.
City responded brilliantly to going behind. Three minutes later Nasri beat his marker and crossed along the ground. Aguero reached the cross and smashed a quality shot against the Napoli bar.
One minute later, Manchester City were level when Aleksandar Kolarov struck a beautiful free kick into the bottom right hand corner of De Sanctis’ net.
Dzeko had a great chance to win the match in the 78th minute. Adam Johnson made a good run into the Napoli box and his cross deflected to Dzeko. The Bosnian turned and shot but the ball went wide.
Vincent Kompany, who was one of City’s star performers, almost made a mistake that cost Roberto’s Mancini’s team the match in the 87th minute. Kompany tried to pass back to Hart but left it short. Hart rushed out and just reached the ball before Pandev and kicked the ball against the Napoli striker and out for a goal kick.
In the end, both teams will be relatively happy with a draw. The two teams played some good football and should cause Bayern Munich and Villarreal a lot of problems in the remaining Group A matches.