Sterling R. (2′)
Ball Possession: 45% – 55%
Goal Attempts: 7- 15
Shots on Goal: 1 – 3
Shots off Goal: 3 – 6
Blocked Shots: 3 – 6
Free Kicks: 13 – 12
Corner Kicks: 1 – 3
Offsides: 1 – 3
Goalkeeper Saves: 2 – 1
Fouls: 11 – 9
Red Cards: 0 – 0
Yellow Cards: 2 – 2
Total Passes: 479 – 599
Tackles: 8 – 5
Attacks: 92 – 133
Dangerous Attacks: 30 – 52
Mikel Arteta’s men couldn’t beat Pep Guardiola’s resurgent men again in another EPL encounter. Indeed the last time the Gunners beat Manchester City in the league was far back during Arsene Wenger’s era. A victory for Manchester City was never in doubt considering the fact that they are currently on a 17-games winning streak before this game against a Gunners side that has lost 2 out of their last 3 EPL games.
Mikel Arteta made some changes to his starting Line up that played in the Europa League against Benfica on Thursday night, with Kieran Tierney, Pablo Mari, Rob Holding, Mohammed Elneny, and Nicholas Pepe all returning to the starting Line up.
But it was Guardiola’s men who got the opening goal inside just 80 seconds after kick-off, with Raheem Sterling rising highest to head Riyad Mahrez’s cross from the right into the net to give the Citizens an early lead. Arsenal couldn’t trouble the defense line of Guardiola’s men for most of the encounter, with the early goal putting them in a very tight position while searching for an equalizer. Kieran Tierney came closest to testing Ederson in the City goal, but his brilliant drive wasn’t enough to get past the City’s goalkeeper.
In the second half, Arsenal were more composed on the ball, they put in a better display than they did in the first half but they were lucky not to concede another goal when the in-form Ilkay Gundogan’s curling shot from the edge of the box was tipped behind for a corner by Bernd Leno. City came close again to scoring through Joao Cancelo, but his brilliant outside foot shot went off target from inside the box. Mikel Arteta threw on Alexandre Lacazette and Emile Smith Rowe, in an attempt to get something from the game but a resounding City midfield, anchored by the returning Kevin De Bruyne, would keep the Gunners’ attack at Bay. The last chance of the game fell to Gabriel Jesus, but his shot from inside the box sailed high over the bar.
The defeat leaves the Gunners in 10th position, as they look to the Europa League as a redemption for a very poor outing so far in the EPL season. A return leg against Benfica on Thursday night is the next game for the Gunners. They would be hoping to return to winning ways hereafter ending the first leg in a 1-1 draw.
*Pep Guardiola’s men have gone 18 straight games in all competitions without losing or drawing, scoring 46 goals in the process and conceding just 7. This is the longest winning run in Guardiola’s coaching career.
*Raheem Sterling got the only goal in the reverse fixture earlier in the season, a 1-0 win at the Etihad and he was on hand to score the only goal again at the Emirates. A pure haunter.
WHAT IS NEXT?
A Europa league game against Benfica on Thursday night is the next game before a weekend trip to take on the foxes, Leicester City.
Match Review by Patrick Alexander