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sábado, 21 de enero de 2017

Manchester City 2-2 Tottenham: Guardiola left frustrated as Spurs come from behind to draw thanks to Dele Alli and Son Heung-Min


  • Leroy Sane gave Manchester City a deserved lead after blocking attempted headed clearance by Hugo Lloris 
  • Lloris made a terrible error five minutes later by dropping ball at Kevin De Bruyne's feet for him to tap home
  • Dele Alli got Spurs back into game on 58 minutes with close range header after superb Kyle Walker cross
  • Kevin Wimmer came in for injured Jan Vertonghen but was replaced at half-time by Son Heung-Min
  • Son finished low for equaliser after City should have had a penalty for a push on Raheem Sterling by Walker
  • Gabriel Jesus came on for final ten minutes for English football debut and had a goal ruled out for offside
  • John Stones was dropped to the bench by Pep Guardiola and only came on in the 84th minute

It was Manchester City’s season in 60 seconds: hope and expectation, then fury and bewilderment. From a position of authority came another combustion and, in all likelihood, the end of a dream.
The 76th minute of the wonderful game may prove to be one of the most significant of the entire campaign. Had it gone as Pep Guardiola anticipated, his side would have been awarded a penalty and a 2-1 lead would have become an unassailable 3-1 advantage.
As it turned out, though, referee Andre Marriner waved play on after Kyle Walker nudged Raheem Sterling in the back, Tottenham raced up field and, after a glorious exchange of passes, substitute Son Heung-Min swept a drive past Claudio Bravo to keep them in the title conversation.
Leroy Sane gave Manchester City the lead after blocking an attempted clearance by Tottenham  keeper Hugo Lloris
Leroy Sane gave Manchester City the lead after blocking an attempted clearance by Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris
Lloris made a terrible error five minutes later by dropping the ball at Kevin De Bruyne's feet for him to tap home for 2-0
Lloris made a terrible error five minutes later by dropping the ball at Kevin De Bruyne's feet for him to tap home for 2-0
Dele Alli got Spurs back into game on 58 minutes with a close range header after a superb Kyle Walker cross
Dele Alli got Spurs back into game on 58 minutes with a close range header after a superb Kyle Walker cross
Son Heung-Min then equalised for Spurs with 12 minutes to play with a cool low finish to beat City keeper Claudio Bravo
Son Heung-Min then equalised for Spurs with 12 minutes to play with a cool low finish to beat City keeper Claudio Bravo
Sane latched onto superb through ball by De Bruyne early on in the second half to put the hosts in front at the Etihad
Sane latched onto superb through ball by De Bruyne early on in the second half to put the hosts in front at the Etihad
Sane celebrates the richly deserved City opening goal with Sergio Aguero and David Silva as the fans behind rejoice
Sane celebrates the richly deserved City opening goal with Sergio Aguero and David Silva as the fans behind rejoice
City had been dominant in the first half and the goal was completely deserved for their improved display
City had been dominant in the first half and the goal was completely deserved for their improved display
Lloris fumbled what appeared to be a simple cross from Raheem Sterling and De Bruyne was quick to pounce on 51 minutes
Lloris fumbled what appeared to be a simple cross from Raheem Sterling and De Bruyne was quick to pounce on 51 minutes
Lloris has conceded 13 goals in four games at the Etihad Stadium and had another bad game in Manchester on Saturday
Lloris has conceded 13 goals in four games at the Etihad Stadium and had another bad game in Manchester on Saturday
For much of the first half, though, it seemed as if they would be engulfed a light blue tidal wave. Guardiola made changes to the team that had been demolished by Everton – the chief one being Aleksandar Kolarov replacing John Stones – but playing it cautiously was not an option.
From the first whistle, they followed Guardiola’s instructions to the letter. Passes zipped about, rat-a-tat-tat, as if they were on a five-a-side pitch. David Silva was magical, Kevin De Bruyne imperious, while the forward line of Sergio Aguero, Leroy Sane and Sterling buzzed with intent.
Mauricio Pochettino could only look on, hands wedged into his trouser pockets, shaking his head as City enjoyed absolute territorial dominance. So muted were Tottenham as an attacking force, they only touched the ball once in the opposition penalty area. The tally for City, by contrast, was 28.
Yet there was nothing to show for it, just as was the case at Everton. All those darting runs, the intense pressing and the determination to hunt in packs, it never made a difference to the scoreline. They were too deliberate or lacked composure and Tottenham were able to survive. 
Alli has been in tremendous form lately for Tottenham and his goal was the catalyst for Spurs to begin to improve
Alli has been in tremendous form lately for Tottenham and his goal was the catalyst for Spurs to begin to improve
The visitors did eventually draw level, half-time substitute Son the man to get the crucial second Tottenham goal
The visitors did eventually draw level, half-time substitute Son the man to get the crucial second Tottenham goal
Son celebrates his equaliser with Harry Winks and Danny Rose which keeps their title hopes alive and well
Son celebrates his equaliser with Harry Winks and Danny Rose which keeps their title hopes alive and well
That they did was down to some wonderful defending – two tackles from Danny Rose (on Sterling) and Toby Alderweireld (on Pablo Zabaleta) were quite magnificent in the opening 12 minutes – decisive goalkeeping from Hugo Lloris and wretched finishing.
Take the interplay between Aguero and De Bruyne in the 36th minute. It was a joy to watch them carve out an opportunity but by the time the Belgian had picked out City’s No 10 out at the back post, the moment was gone and Lloris comfortably made the save.
There were other moments. Zabaleta cracked a left-footed drive that zipped past the far post; Sane headed wide, Sterling demanded a penalty when he tangled with Victor Wanyama, Lloris made a fine save from another Aguero shot. All City wanted was one chink of light to cash in.
Within four minutes of the re-start, they had it. There was nothing glorious about the build, just a straight ball up the middle. But, crucially, Lloris suffered a short circuit and he headed his attempted clearance straight at Sane, who had the facile task of walking his effort into an empty net.
If that was bad from Lloris, worse followed. When City launched a counterattack in the 54th minute, with Sterling hurtling down the right, it didn’t seem possible they would score but Lloris allowed a ball he should have gathered to squirm away and De Bruyne could not miss.
It was all so uncharacteristic from Lloris, one of the safest pairs of hands in the division, and his despair was obvious. Pochettino simply sat in his dugout seat and glowered towards Tottenham’s penalty area. Guardiola, on the other hand, was so ecstatic he blew kisses to the crowd.
Just before the equaliser, Manchester City should have had a penalty when Walker pushed Sterling as he was about to shoot
Just before the equaliser, Manchester City should have had a penalty when Walker pushed Sterling as he was about to shoot
Sterling had broken free but lost balance under pressure from Walker and could only put his effort into Lloris' gloves
Sterling had broken free but lost balance under pressure from Walker and could only put his effort into Lloris' gloves
Pep Guardiola was livid that City were not awarded a penalty for the push on Sterling by Walker, just before the equaliser
Pep Guardiola was livid that City were not awarded a penalty for the push on Sterling by Walker, just before the equaliser
His joy, however, was short lived. From what should have been a position that allowed them to see the game out, Tottenham came to life. A quick break down the right, a gem of cross from Kyle Walker and thumping header from Alli. Game on.
Soon it was game all square. Guardiola’s fury had not subsided from the latest Sterling penalty claim when Tottenham sped forward. Mousa Dembele was involved, so too were Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane but it was left to Son to drive home the dagger, his shot fizzing past Claudio Bravo.
From a neutral point of view, this was a feast for the eyes. Neither side looked prepared to shake hands and accept a point and they went for broke in the final 15 minutes, with Guardiola’s response to the setback being to send on Gabriel Jesus.
His impact could almost have immediate but a linesman’s flag cut short his celebrations after he had slid on to the end of a De Bruyne cross and the disallowed goal left Guardiola, not for the first time, on his knees in despair. It might be the last, either. 
Alli went into the book just before his opener for pushing Nicolas Otamendi over in a needless confrontation
Alli went into the book just before his opener for pushing Nicolas Otamendi over in a needless confrontation
City manager  Guardiola saw his side put in a much improved performance at the Etihad Stadium, but they were pegged back
City manager Guardiola saw his side put in a much improved performance at the Etihad Stadium, but they were pegged back
Sterling of Manchester City tangles with Tottenham midfielder Victor Wanyama at the end of the first half
Sterling of Manchester City tangles with Tottenham midfielder Victor Wanyama at the end of the first half
Sterling also felt he should have had a penalty when he went down under pressure from Wanyama but nothing was given
Sterling also felt he should have had a penalty when he went down under pressure from Wanyama but nothing was given
Sterling gave Spurs problems throughout the first half as Manchester City had 11 first half shots on the Tottenham goal
Sterling gave Spurs problems throughout the first half as Manchester City had 11 first half shots on the Tottenham goal
Soon it was game all square. Guardiola's fury had not subsided from the latest Sterling penalty claim when Tottenham began to move forward. City showed no intensity in trying to stop them and they were carved open as Christian Eriksen and Kane combined to set Son free.
From a neutral point of view, this was a feast for the eyes. Neither side looked prepared t o shake hands and accept a point and they went for broke in the final 15 minutes, with Guardiola's response to the setback being to send on Gabriel Jesus.
His impact could almost have immediate but a linesman's flag cut short his celebrations after he had slid on to the end of a De Bruyne cross and the disallowed goal left Guardiola, not for the first time, on his knees in despair. 
Sane fires over the bar under pressure from Danny Rose while Toby Alderweireld and Kevin Wimmer watch on
Sane fires over the bar under pressure from Danny Rose while Toby Alderweireld and Kevin Wimmer watch on
Sergio Aguero looked sharp as City sought to avenge their embarrassing 4-0 loss at Everton last weekend
Sergio Aguero looked sharp as City sought to avenge their embarrassing 4-0 loss at Everton last weekend
Pablo Zabaleta reverted to a defensive role after playing in midfield at Goodison Park and looked much more accomplished
Pablo Zabaleta reverted to a defensive role after playing in midfield at Goodison Park and looked much more accomplished
Gabriel Jesus came on for his debut in the final ten minutes and was very impressive immediately in English football
Gabriel Jesus came on for his debut in the final ten minutes and was very impressive immediately in English football
Jesus celebrates after putting the ball in the net late on - but it was ruled out correctly for offside
Jesus celebrates after putting the ball in the net late on - but it was ruled out correctly for offside

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