Phil Foden jolts Manchester City into life to leave Bellingham in shade | Barney Ronay

The face-off of dreams between England’s No 10s failed to materialise but champions’ attacker made decisive impact

This was a strange, giddy, tipsy kind of game, played out beneath the humid conservatory roof of the Santiago Bernabéu. Brilliant things kept happening, in between periods of not much happening at all. There were long spells of grinding gears. For most of the night the meeting of England’s No 10s, the Foden-Bellingham face-off of your dreams, refused stubbornly to materialise.

And yet as the night wore on the quality of the six goals was increasingly reminiscent of a Kendall Roy birthday party music policy, all bangers all the time. The last of them, Federico Valverde’s equaliser to make it 3-3, was just ridiculous, like an exercise in computer‑generated extreme technique, a static right-footed downward‑smashed full-force volley into the far corner, scythed through a crowd of players with the precision of an elite crown green bowler.

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