After a valiant performance against Manchester City, Borussia Mönchengladbach fell just short of a famous victory and securing a UEFA Europa League berth at the Etihad. Goals from David Silva, Raheem Sterling and Wilfried Bony earned the three points and top spot for the Citizens, despite Julian Korb's leveler and Raffael's strike to put Gladbach ahead.
Foals fired into the lead before the break
The game needed no time at all to get going, and Gladbach's formation that beat Bayern Munich at the weekend was being deployed to great effect once again. It was the visitors who would have the first chance of the game, with Lars Stindl unable to find a way past Joe Hart early on.
Despite this, City took the lead just after the quarter hour mark. Sterling, with his back to goal, managed to thread through Silva on goal. The Spaniard is known for his finesse, but a powerful drive at the near post beat Yann Sommer and had the home fans off their feet. Everything for looking rosy for the Manchester side, especially after such a stylish opener.
Their joy was short-lived, however. Gladbach leveled just three minutes later after Fabian Johnson's powerful run decimated the City side. After breaking past several players, the American managed to shift the ball over to Stindl. The former Hannover midfielder managed to find Korb coming in from the right, and he swept the ball past Hart to restore parity. A Sterling shot from distance was the only real shot of note in the aftermath, though there would be one further goal before the break.
After dominating possession and large periods of play since the goal, it was the Foals who struck in the build-up to half-time. After Stindl's deflected shot made its way out to Oscar Wendt, the Swede crossed towards Johnson in the middle and he managed to find Raffael, who tucked the ball home to the delight of the traveling support.
Bony and Sterling star in City comeback
The second half was, however, a different story. The shots rained down on the Gladbach goal but Yaya Toure, Sterling and his team-mates were continually denied by Sommer or let down by their own poor finishing. City, somehow, just couldn't find a way to crack their resilient visitors, but the introduction of Bony changed all that.
The Ivorian came off the bench to devastating effect setting up two goals before scoring one of his own in the space of six second half minutes. After Bony set up Sterling for a tap in to level the match, his pass let the former Liverpool forward in again to finish with aplomb and turn the game on its head. He then made sure there would be no comeback for the valiant visitors, as he slotted home at the second time of asking to finish off proceedings.
City are now into the knockout rounds as group winners, while André Schubert's incredible run has taken a slight dint but there were more positives than negatives for Gladbach. They can plan ahead for a run in the cup and league, in a bid to make it back to Europe's elite competition.