The game started in frantic fashion when Manchester City had a VAR appeal turned down and the hosts opened scoring at the 6th minute through a scorcher from Fabinho. Mohammed Salah doubled their lead in the 13th with a smart finish.
City started piling the pressure afterwards and created a load of chances, none of which went in. Liverpool weren’t that wasteful and in the 51st minute, a fantastic cross from Jordan Henderson allowed Sadio Mane to head in the 3rd goal.
The visitors pulled one back in the 78th minute, when Angelino’s incisive pass was superbly swung into the net by Bernardo Silva. However, Liverpool held out and oversaw a famous win which means City are now 9 points behind them and have fallen into 4th place!
Manchester City Player Ratings
Pep Guardiola (5.5) –
Pep took a big risk trying to take the game to Liverpool at Anfield with a high-octane, attacking start to the game. Paid for the overeagerness by conceding two early goals which took the game away from his side. But his decision to play Angelino worked a treat as he did really well. Unlucky with the VAR decisions, but lacking a proper Plan B hurt his side today.
Claudio Bravo (5.5) –
All the eyes were on the mistake-prone Chilean, but Liverpool’s early strikes weren’t on his errors at all. Did well to save Firmino’s powerful attempt at the 38th minute. Another stunning save off Salah before half-time. He could’ve done better saving Mane’s header though.
Kyle Walker (4.0) –
Caught too narrow at times, especially leading up to the second goal as Robertson got too much free space to send in the menacing cross. Persistently troubled by Mane and completely lost track of him allowing him a free header for the 3rd. Did absolutely nothing positive going forward and gave away possession too many times. Perhaps playing as a makeshift goalie has impacted his defensive capabilities.
Fernandinho (6.5) –
The City captain didn’t have the easiest of starts, as he wasn’t able to make the clutch clearance before Salah’s strike. But he improved from that point, making a few strong challenges and clattering Salah with a strong tackle at the 40th minute. Continued his good work through the second, winning possession multiple times and harrying Liverpool’s attackers.
John Stones (6.0) –
Stones was shockingly the most composed figure in defence and often had to cover for his fellow defenders. Made a few crucial clearances to ease the tension. Surprisingly did a good job to keep Firmino isolated and forced his substitution.
Angelino (6.5) –
The inexperienced left-back had a daunting task, but dealt with it with maturity. Despite being hassled by Salah, he stuck well and made a few decent defensive contributions. Almost scored in the 28th minute after driving into the box, but his attempt struck the post! But his inexperience showed allowing Henderson to get in a cross too easily.
He was threatening going forward and made a pitch-perfect assist for Bernardo’s goal. Put in another delightful cross in the 86th minute but saw it go over the bar from Walker’s head.
Rodri (5.0) –
The Spaniard was clearly rattled by the high-octane nature of the game. His distribution was secure and he drove City forward with some incisive passes too. Getting booked for dissent after the hour-mark didn’t help. Welcome to the Premier League!
IIlkay Gundogan (5.0) –
Gundogan didn’t look so sure protecting his defence and his botched clearance allowed Fabinho to strike the thunderbolt goal. He kept the game ticking with quick passes, but could never create anything or get a swipe at goal.
Kevin de Bruyne (7.0) –
The Belgian continued his superb delivery-system, sending in a few venomous set-pieces early on to rattle Liverpool. Played some exceptional through-balls, especially a pin-point one to see Aguero through before half-time. Figuratively and literally handed a goal on the plate in the 68th minute, but saw that wasted as well. Unlucky to be on the losing side. Could’ve probably gotten a hattrick of assists if he was part of Liverpool on the day!
Bernardo Silva (7.0) –
Bernardo caused Liverpool quite a few problems driving with menacing intent. Went past Van Dijk at the 5th-minute mark, but nobody could capitalize on his pass. Totally lost track of Robertson, allowing him to assist the second goal. But he redeemed that by pulling one back with a brilliant finish past Alisson. Looked the most compelling in the front-three.
Sergio Aguero (5.0) –
Aguero doesn’t have that great a record at Anfield and seemed desperate for a penalty early on, getting right into the referees face after the opener. Sparked up at the 25th minute by twisting Fabinho and forcing a strong save from Alisson off his attempted curler. Was selfish at the 42nd when he took a shot for himself rather than finding the free De Bruyne, but saw it go wide.
Failed an easy tap-in from KDB’s beauty pass in the 67th minute. Another stinker at Anfield.
Raheem Sterling (5.5) –
Sterling initially seemed a bit nervous at his former hunting ground. Scuffed an easy header wide at the 8th minute to everyone’s shock. He’s been getting the better of Alexander-Arnold with his buzzy movement, but lacking that final product. Brilliantly skipped past many bodies in the 54th, but his shot went just over.
Makes an embarrassing dive in the 65th to try and win the penalty. Whisked into the area pretty well n the 79th minute, but Jesus failed to score from his pass. Bit of an off-day.
Gabriel Jesus (5.0) –
Wasted a glorious chance after coming on, turning inside-out yards away from the goal to miss Sterling’s pass.
MAN OF THE MATCH
De Bruyne was amazing in constantly exposing Liverpool’s defensive vulnerabilities with his through-balls and set-pieces. Unlucky to not get anything. Fabinho is definitely my MOTM, but KDB was City’s best player.