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Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League

Man City 7-0 Leeds: Player Ratings

The Whites were whitewashed in their worst ever Premier League defeat.

Humbled: Leeds suffered their worst ever Premier League defeat at the hands of a ruthlessly superb Manchester City side.
| Photo by Lynne Cameron - Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

Leeds United suffered their worst ever Premier League defeat at the hands of Manchester City, who mercilessly demolished the Whites in a 7-0 humiliation at the Etihad Stadium.

Phil Foden, Jack Grealish, Kevin de Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez, John Stones and Nathan Ake all got in on the action while the unnamed side character from the Simpsons begged Pep Guardiola to stop.

Marcelo Bielsa’s men had no response to the Citizens, and like the travelling supporters most of the players could only watch as the Argentine conceded seven for the first time in his managerial career.

Relegation-threatened clubs’ seasons are rarely settled in games against the country’s best, and few opponents would have been capable of avoiding the storm that Man City’s dazzling attackers created, but the challenge facing Bielsa has been made starkly clearer.


Illan Meslier - 6 (MOTM)

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Meslier denies Rodri after the Man City midfielder breaks into the area.
Photo by Tom Flathers/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

The scale of Man City’s dominance becomes clear when Leeds’ goalkeeper emerges as their man of the match in their biggest ever top flight loss. There was nothing Meslier could do to stop the onslaught, particularly with the hosts’ sixth, which came after a brilliant double-save from the Frenchman.


Junior Firpo (off 73’) - 3.5

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Mahrez provided a tricky challenge for Firpo down Man City’s right flank.
Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

A tough night at the office for Firpo, whose progress made at Chelsea has been at least temporarily stunted by a magnificent Man City outfit. Mahrez was a nightmare for the ex-Barca defender to deal with, but the fault still laid with the left-back at times. His failure to close down the Algerian winger invited him to score the Citizens’ fourth just after the break.

His booking means he will miss the Arsenal game, providing yet another selection headache for a Leeds side that is utterly riddled with injuries and now suspensions.


Diego Llorente - 4

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Llorente had his work cut out by Man City’s relentless attacks on goal.
Photo by Tom Flathers/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

The ease at which Nathan Ake despatched his header for Man City’s seventh summed up the evening for Llorente, who was totally outclassed in the aerial challenge.


Luke Ayling - 4

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Ayling is left in the dust by Man City’s Foden.
Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Rodri bulldozing past Ayling in central defence set up the sort of evening you’d expect from an ex-Yeovil and Bristol City defender coming up against one of the best and most expensively-assembled attacks in Premier League history.


Jamie Shackleton (off 38’) - 5.5

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League - Etihad Stadium
Shackleton picked up an injury during the first half.
Photo by Martin Rickett/PA Images via Getty Images

A desperately unlucky evening for Shackleton, who succumbed to a challenge at the worst possible moment for Leeds in regards to their growing injury list and poor start to the campaign. He looked okay before coming off, all things considered, by tracking back well and holding his ground against the likes of Grealish and Bernardo Silva.


Adam Forshaw - 4

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Forshaw was unable to replicate the physical presence of the injured Phillips, and was often dragged away from the centre of the pitch by Man City.
Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

One of Forshaw’s greatest strengths is his retention of possession; his ability to receive and distribute the ball under pressure and rarely miss his target. But the main quality Leeds needed from their defensive midfielder in a game where they were so clearly second-best was a ball-winning mentality.

The midfielder has been one of the Whites’ better players this season but was never going to replicate Kalvin Phillips’ defensive presence, and was subsequently bypassed with ease again and again. Leeds’ man-marking system left Forshaw isolated in the middle (when he wasn’t being dragged wide) and at times he looked helpless against Man City’s star-studded attack.


Jack Harrison - 5.5

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Harrison had few chances to showcase his ability against his former club.
Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Dangerous crosses from the left and an anticipation for rare counter attacks was counteracted by Harrison’s lack of end product and poor decision-making in the first half; on the odd occasion he found himself leading the line, the attack fizzled as the former Man City winger failed to make any meaningful attempts to find a target in the box.

This notably improved in the second half, particularly on the hour mark when he cut inside and won a corner with a shot that defected round the wrong side of Edersen’s far post. He also looked more confident in the final third and linked up well with the likes of Dallas, albeit to no avail.


Tyler Roberts - 5

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League - Etihad Stadium
Roberts often found himself crowded out as a result of Man City’s relentless pressing.
Photo by Martin Rickett/PA Images via Getty Images

Fell victim to the swarm that was Man City’s midfield in the first half. Got more involved in the second half


Stuart Dallas - 5.5

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Dallas’ mistimed attempt to clear Foden’s opener marked the start of a difficult evening for the Northern Irishman.
Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

One of Leeds’ better players on the night. Found Harrison with a delightful lobbed ball at the start of the second half in what was one of the visitors’ best build-up plays of the match. Then tested Edersen with a dangerous shot from outside the box, forcing the Brazilian goalkeeper into a great save.


Raphinha - 4

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Man City did not allow Leeds’ star player any time on the ball, leaving the Brazilian isolated.
Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

It’s not often you forget Raphinha is on the pitch, but there you go.


Daniel James (off 46’) - 4

Chelsea v Leeds United - Premier League
James saw very little action and came off during the interval.
Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images

On the best of days, James can find himself isolated while leading the line for Bielsa’s side. Today was not the best of days.


Mateusz Klich (on 38’) - 4

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Klich was called into action earlier than expected after Shackleton’s injury.
Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Found a nice ball or two but was otherwise wayward with his passes on too many occasions during the second half.


Joe Gelhardt (on 46’) - 5

Manchester City v Leeds United - Premier League
Gelhardt struggled to provide the focal point for Leeds after replacing James up front.
Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Brought on at half-time to provide a focal point for Leeds, but became as isolated as James had been in the first half after all hope of salvaging anything had been lost.


Cody Drameh (on 73’) - 5

Arsenal v Leeds United - Carabao Cup Round of 16
Drameh may see further minutes against Arsenal in Leeds’ next fixture following the injury to Shackleton.
Photo by Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

Put in as good a shift as you could hope for with Leeds getting beaten while they were down by the time he entered the fray.


Oof.

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