first_img Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero Manchester City came from behind to snatch a stunning 3-2 victory over ten-man Bayern Munich thanks to Sergio Aguero’s brilliant hat-trick at the Etihad Stadium.The Argentine had put the hosts ahead with a penalty, which followed Mehdi Benatia’s red card for a clumsy challenge, giving Manuel Pellegrini’s side a promising position as they looked to reignite their faltering hopes.The Citizens though, who have looked lacklustre throughout their European campaign, allowed their opponents to get themselves in front through strikes from Xabi Alonso and Robert Lewandowski just before half time.But in an incredible twist at the death, Aguero hit two more goals in the last five minutes to hand his side a dramatic victory and a huge Champions League lifeline.They still face a tough task to qualify out of Group E, though, with a win against Roma needed to help guarantee progress, while a CSKA Moscow victory over Bayern Munich would scupper everything and leave them facing Europa League football for the rest of the season.After a testy start to the match City looked to catch their visitors cold on a chilly night in Manchester but, after darting into the box, Frank Lampard could only nod the ball the wrong side of the upright from Gael Clichy’s cross.Soon though, Pellegrini’s players were doing all the chasing as Bayern Munich’s excellent passing game left them running in circles and even with Aguero hassling their centre-backs and nipping at their ankles, they remained cool in possession.Bayern’s bouncing supporters were still made to sweat, mind you, as Jesus Navas swung a tantalising cross along the six-yard line but no City player was able to punish some rare poor positioning from Manuel Neuer.Rafinha’s vicious strike on the angle was then well blocked by a blue shirt and putting bodies on the line paid dividends with City hurtling down the other end, and as Aguero raced into the penalty area he was upended by the ham-fisted Benatia.A red card was flashed in the former Roma star’s direction and the Argentine cracked the ball past Neuer with confidence, giving his side a much-needed lead on home soil.Going in front appeared to give the Manchester City players a hunger to kill off the game not seen in previous Champions League matches and the likes of Bacary Sagna and the seemingly omnipresent Aguero capitalised on even the slightest mistake by their opponents.Now it was the Bayern Munich players forced to chase the ball, a rare sight indeed, while Lampard clattered a long-range effort into the stands after a clever free-kick routine.But fools rush in, and five minutes before the break France international defender Eliaquim Mangala gave away a daft free-kick on the edge his own box and the elegant Xabi Alonso, on his 33rd birthday, steered a cute low strike into the bottom corner, deceiving the stationary Joe Hart.The Blues just needed to keep their calm and get to half time with the scores level but instead they appeared panicked and Jerome Boateng, the match-winner in the two sides’ previous contest, found the leaping Lewandowski whose header looped over the despairing dive of Hart right with the referee’s whistle impending.A curled strike from Alonso threaten to make things worse for the hosts immediately after the restart but soon City were knocking on Neuer’s door as the German goalkeeper was forced into a smart stop from Navas and sent scrambling when Samir Nasri bent a shot just over the apex.Stevan Jovetic was introduced in place of James Milner as Pellegrini pushed his troops for a leveller and Lampard, again from range, sent Neuer sprawling into action.With five minutes left to play Pellegrini’s substitution paid off with Montenegrin star Jovetic playing Aguero through on goal after cutting out a stray Alonso pass and the City sharpshooter clipped his low shot past Neuer and into the far corner.And, having been handed a great chance to beat the Bundesliga giants, Aguero then stepped up to capitalise on a Boateng error to flick home an injury time winner.The victory leaves them on five points in Group E along with Roma in second and CSKA Moscow in third, who played out a 1-1 draw in Russia earlier in the day. 1last_img

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