Wow,” was the word used by the Manchester City official Twitter account on Tuesday night following the dismantling of Schalke 04 in their Champions League last-16 second-leg encounter.
Pep Guardiola’s side had taken apart their German visitors to record a 7-0 win on the night and reach the last eight with a 10-2 aggregate victory.
Not bad. But I for one was glad they failed to score an eighth goal in the six minutes plus injury time that remained after Gabriel Jesus struck the seventh. It preserved a perhaps unlikely record held by a British club of most goals scored in a game against German opposition in the European Cup – or Champions League as we now know it. It occurred in the preliminary round of the competition 57 years ago: Dundee 8 Cologne 1.
What further elevates the Dundee result – their goals were scored by Gilzean (3), Wishart, Robertson, Smith, Penman and Hemmersbach, who put through his own net – is that Cologne really were German champions that year (Schalke 04, by contrast, finished runners-up last season, 21 points behind champions Bayern Munich) and were the ones expected to sweep their Scottish hosts aside that September’s night at Dens Park.
But fair play to Cologne. After I pointed out on Twitter that Manchester City had fallen just short and top chef Tom Kitchin replied with how much he loved the stat, Cologne’s official English language Twitter account replied with a doleful: “We love it a little less so”.