Premier League: Manchester United edge past City 2-1 at Etihad
Former champions Manchester United put up a splendid display of attacking gameplay as they defeated arch rivals and defending champions Manchester City 2-1 in their Premier League tie at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. The win takes United to the fifth spot, while City struggle at the third spot, with their title defense chances seemingly over. Here is how the match panned out.
Daniel James came up with the opening chance for the visitors, after Fred set up a good assist for him, while his powerful shot was palmed away by Ederson. However, it was in the 19th-minute when the referee initially revoked United a penalty, only for VAR to over-rule it, as Bernardo Silva brought down Marcus Rashford inside the box. Meanwhile, Rashford converted it swiftly.
It was in the 27th minute when Rashford came close to doubling the lead, but the ball clipped the crossbar and bounced over. However, it was two minutes later when Martial and James followed up with a good pass, only for the former to find the bottom corner of the near post. Meanwhile, VAR denied City a penalty at the stroke of half-time.
Following the break, the hosts were charged up as in the 56th minute, Kevin De Bruyne's powerful run and shot from inside the box was well saved by Victor Lindelof, who slid in. Seven minutes later, it was Rodri, who fired a thunderbolt from just outside the box after receiving a pass, only for David de Gea to push it over the bar.
While City looked relentless in the closing stages, with a number of chances, United's defense continued to pile pressure. It was in the 85th minute when a corner kick from Riyad Mahrez saw Nicolas Otamendi thumping the ball in with a powerful header to pull one back for the hosts. However, de Gea, along with rock-solid defense, sealed United's win.
As for some key stats from the match: This is Pep Guardiola's worst start to a top-flight season in his managerial career, following the opening 16 matches (32 points). United have never lost after leading 2-0 at half-time in the EPL, in their past 170 matches, while City have never won while trailing 0-2 in EPL, in their past 51 matches.
10 - Anthony Martial has been directly involved in 10 goals in his last 13 Premier League starts (6 goals, 4 assists). Flying. pic.twitter.com/wyKcy36v9p— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 7, 2019