Manchester City midfielder Rodrigo has said his side "could have done more damage" to Real Madrid after they came from behind to win 2-1 in their UEFA Champions League round-of-16 first leg on Wednesday.
The Citizens will bring a valuable advantage back to the Etihad Stadium after late goals from Gabriel Jesus and Kevin De Bruyne saw them take the victory in the Spanish capital.
Real captain Sergio Ramos was also sent off for the hosts, but Rodrigo, also known as Rodri, said the result could have been even worse for Los Blancos, per ESPN FC's Rob Dawson:
"They dropped in the last 10 minutes, we detected that and if the game had lasted a little longer, we could have done more damage still. But given the way the game was it is a very good result for us.
"We showed strength when things went badly and that's what we have lacked this season. We managed to do something that we have lacked all season which is hold on in the bad moments, have personality, demonstrate that and not lose our shape or control."
De Bruyne and Jesus combined to kickstart City's revival when the latter headed the former's cross past Thibaut Courtois in the 78th minute to give the Citizens a lifeline at the Santiago Bernabeu (U.S. viewers only):
Pep Guardiola's side were bossed out of the game's early exchanges and took just 26.9 percent of possession after the first 10 minutes, per WhoScored.com.
The visiting team grew into the game, but Rodrigo's misplaced pass in midfield gave Real their chance for Isco's breakthrough (U.S. viewers only):
Ramos was the last man back for Real in the 86th minute, when his pull on Jesus was enough to send the Brazilian tumbling, and his absence in the second leg is sure to be felt by Real. Riyad Mahrez couldn't make the most of the resulting free-kick, another glaring opportunity for City to increase their lead further.
Guardiola said after the game that the tie is far from decided and that he is expecting a resilient response from Zinedine Zidane's men in the reverse fixture, as Football Daily shared:
It's perhaps unsurprising that Rodrigo—who joined City from Real rivals Atletico Madrid last summer—is inclined to rub salt in the wound following such a memorable victory. The 23-year-old has become an important member of Guardiola's lineup in his maiden season in England and recently broke the Premier League record for most passes in a single game:
He echoed his manager's comments, adding the round-of-16 tie is "not done at all." City will hope they aren't made to regret their missed chances when the teams meet again in Manchester on March 17.