Goran Pandev; photo: corrieredellosport.it

Pandev made substitute appearance for Napoli

Goran Pandev; photo: corrieredellosport.itGoran Pandev made his Champions League debut for Napoli by entering the game in the 83rd minute as his side drew 1:1 against Manchester City.

Goran Pandev came on for Edinson Cavani who scored the lone goal for Napoli in the 69th minute.  When he entered the game, Pandev played up front as the lone striker, the same position played by Cavani up until his substitution.  Pandev had a chance in the 88th minute when Manchester City defender Vincent Kompany made a mistake with a poor pass but the keeper Joe Hart was alert and just managed to beat Pandev to the ball.  Eventually, the ball deflected off of Pandev for a goal kick.

Manchester City controlled possession for the majority of the game but they had a tough time breaking down the resilient Napoli defense.  Each team hit the post in the 1st half with Napoli attacker Ezequiel Lavezzi striking the post in the 18th minute before Yaya Touré did the same for Manchester City in the 35th minute.  Napoli gained confidence as the game advanced and they nearly scored a goal in the 49th minute when Marek Hamšík’s volley beat the Manchester City keeper but defender Vincent Kompany made the clearance just before the ball was getting ready to reach the back of the net.

Napoli then took the lead in the 69th minute when they executed a nice counter attack with Christian Maggio finding Cavani who slotted a shot past Hart.  However, five minutes later, Aleksandar Kolarov scored directly from a free kick to tie the game at 1:1.  That proved to be the final score as well but Napoli should be pleased with getting a point on the road against Manchester City.  Napoli’s next game in the Champions League is on 27 September 2011 when they take on Villarreal at home.

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