Villa hasn't played since the new year amidst Covid concerns which made their matches to be postponed. You would expect them to be fresh but still not fully up to speed since it has been long they last played and some of their players just recovered. After tonight's game, they would be having 3 games outstanding to play. They are having a good start to the season and in a good place right now.
City didn't come to play either. They want to top the Premier League table even if it is just for a few hours. A win here would mean City would be the 9th Premier League toppers this season. What a season the Premier League have witnessed.
City started brightly and Foden had a mesmerizing moment when he danced into the box with amazing footwork and he could only draw a corner.
Barkley wasted few chances on the night too and could have gotten his team ahead on those occasions. He was put clear on 3 against 2 situations where he had two of his teammates on either side but his pass was lazy and it failed to pick out the teammate he was hoping to find.
Cancelo was brilliant on the night as he showed great desire to win the game for his team. He blazed an effort over in the 12th minute while inside the box while Bernado almost nicked it for his first goal when he almost bundled his effort in close to the touchline.
City had injury concern for the night as Walker was taken out due to injury and Zichenko came in for him. That didn't stop their determination though as De Bruyne also had an outside effort blocked. Villa defended with their lives.
Rodri also had a go as De Bruyne had earlier but it was not going to beat this goalkeeper. Foden tried to pull all the strings from the side and his low cross that flashed across the face of the box was unattended to. No one could connect with it.
In the 37th minute, Barkley had another chance to put his team ahead but he didn't add enough bend and power to it and the goalkeeper comfortably saved it while in the 45th minute, he had a cheeky attempt in the box but it was deflected for a corner kick. City broke through from the resulting corner as Villa didn't threaten with it. Sterling started the counter when he found De Bruyne who then found Foden whose attempt to score was blocked by Cash.
The half time ended 0-0 with City bombarding Villa while Villa defended well and relied heavily on counter-attacks.
City started the second half with desire to get answers and in the 50th minute, Gundogan tried to pick a top corner but his effort went wide. City had a series of attack and caged Villa to their box but just 2 minutes after, Traore wasted the chance to at least ease the pressure when he was found by a lofted pass. He controlled the ball so well and broke through but his effort had no power. It was a poor one.
City sensed danger and immediately, Bernado Silva almost scored but it was cleared to safety. It was end to end for these two teams in the space of 2 minutes.
Cancelo was close to having his first-ever Premier League goal when De Bruyne's pass found him and Cancelo was brilliant and clever with his attempt but he was able to beat the goalkeeper but not the crossbar. His effort got saved by the crossbar. In 10 minutes, City already had 4 attempts in the second half as against to Villa's 1.
The instrumental De Bruyne was taken out in the 59th minute for Gabriel Jesus. It is either to protect him or he actually got a knock because it is strange to take out your key man when you needed a goal and we know he can produce a moment of magic out of nothing.
Villa gave City something to work with in the 66th minute when the produced series of attacks but City defended well while on the other end, Mings produced a vital save from Gundogan's effort in the box after Foden played him in. Martinez was also up to it on the night when he produced another world class save. He has denied City brilliantly on two major occasions in this match.
2 minutes after McGinn miskicked in City's box, City produced a response in the 79th minute. We thought the game would go on to be a draw but City didn't give up. Their series of attack finally paid off when Bernado Silva scored in a brilliant fashion. It was timely and it was his first of the season.
Villa's mistake by Mings gave the advantage to City. If he hadn't touched it to control the ball, it would have been ruled for offside for Silva. Sometimes the rules can be confusing and this is what made Villa's coach express his opinion that got him a red card. He left the pitch and headed for the tunnel.
Cancel tried to add to the scoreline in the 88th minute but his effort was saved but in the 89th minute, Cash handled the ball in the box with Gabriel Jesus' effort. Gundogan stepped up and duly dispatched his effort and scored. That is now 5 goals in 7 goals for him and 7 goals overall which is by far the most in a single season for him in his career. What a season he is having.
Villa showed character and withstand 28 shot attempts from City but if they continue the way they played, it is certain they would qualify for Europe.
City had 64 touches in Villa's box and that is the most by any team so far which shows you the bombardment that Villa defence faced on the night.
Thank you for your time.
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