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Bournemouth vs Manchester City at Vitality Stadium

Vitality Stadium Referee : Kevin Friend
2nd March 2019 3:00 PM (GMT)
  • 0 Bournemouth

  • 1 Manchester City

    • ‘55' Riyad Mahrez


Commentary By Caroline Oatway


Farewell, Blues!

That's all from me, Blues.

As always, it's been a pleasure and privilege to bring you coverage of today's game.

See you again next Saturday for the visit of Watford to the Etihad Stadium.

Until then, check out the match and player stats from this afternoon's win and stay tuned to for even more post-match reaction.

Have a great weekend!


Drawing blanks

Some rather astonishing stats coming to light that Bournemouth didn't register a single shot - not just on target; in total - or a single corner.

Still, we had to put one in the net at the other end to make it count!


Riyad Mahrez:

"It is a small pitch; against 5-4-1 it is not easy to play but we did very good in the first half. Second was good as well but most important was to avoid the counter and to score.

"We had to be very patient, we can always create chances. Be patient, move the ball quickly, we’ll get space and score.

"It is always like this, when you play away and win by one, you think they might come back. But they didn’t have too many chances to be honest. Perfect game for us

"Liverpool are playing tomorrow. We’ll see but a long way to go."


Pep Guardiola:

"John Stones (came off as a) precaution. Kevin De Bruyne has a little muscular problem - hamstring. 

"When they play 25 games in 92 days it doesn't give them time to recover.

"We made one of best performances ever since we've been together. We didn't concede one shot on target and defended so well.

"So delighted. Thank you to the players."


Job done

Three points the target; three points acquired.

BIG win, that. It doesn't matter how you acquire victory - the point is that you do.

Not 'Vintage City' by any stretch of the imagination, but a real testament to our character that we were able to grind out a result today against a very resolute Bournemouth side.

Over to you, Liverpool...



Super stop by Boruc to deny Mahrez at the backpost.

The ball is cleared only to Walker who drills one, which Kompany stretches to divert in. No joy.


Oh my word.

Aguero strikes the woodwork with a sensational effort (whether it was intended, I can't confirm).

He lofted the ball over Boruc but the Cherries shot-stopper got the MEREST touch to help it onto the bar.


What a chance!

A missed opportunity to potentially seal it, as Sterling latches onto Simpson's poor back header but takes too many touches!

The winger needed only to lob the ball over Boruc, who managed to push away. The ball reached Mahrez but the Algerian blazed well over!


Yellow card

Otamendi goes into the book for handball, attempting to divert the resulting corner goalward illegally. Not sure it was deliberate but Kevin Friend opined otherwise.


Two Sterling efforts!

Boruc denies Sterling twice in quick succession - the first a curling effort to the far corner; the second a combined block with Simpson, which diverts the strike into the side-netting.


Nerves, what nerves?!

GET IN THERE!!! City have the breakthrough, as Silva keeps the ball alive inside the Bournemouth penalty area, playing through to Mahrez and the Algerian drills into the near post!


Nerves creeping in?

Those two enforced changes have set the nerves wrangling a little. The air of 'one of those days'...?

Hopefully, that's a premature prediction!



City have completely dominated but we're yet to really test Boruc.

Credit to Bournemouth, who are defending valiantly - particularly Ake at the heart of the Cherries' defence. The question is: can they keep it up for the second 45 without tiring?

You do get the feeling if we score one, we'll go on to win comfortably but thusfar, that opener is proving elusive.

Gabriel Jesus is out warming up at the break.


Goalmouth scramble!

Late drama, as Simpson almost bundles the ball into his own net. Boruc makes the save and the ball is cleared away before anyone can react.


Bad news

Real concern, as De Bruyne has signalled that he needs to come off. The Belgian seemed to pull something, as he attempted to play a pass through to Sterling, and went down immediately.



Lovely attempt

Sterling goes in search of another goal against Bournemouth, cutting inside and unleashing a dipping effort to the far corner. Not too far away!


Great effort!

I kid you not... Otamendi has just attempted an overhead kick on the edge of the box, which flew just over the bar.

What an effort.



Slight controversy here as Otamendi slides in on Brooks in a 50-50.  Nothing given by referee Kevin Friend. Replays suggest the ball had got away from the former City youngster but he certainly felt the challenge.


One-way traffic

Bournemouth just can't get a touch of the ball at the moment. As soon as CIty lose it, it's won back.

De Bruyne showcasing our defensive side there, tracking back to regain possession almost instantly from Fraser.


Great chance for Silva!

Lovely play from Bernardo releases De Bruyne. The Belgian squares for the on-rushing Silva, who opts to side-foot with his left foot and thumps wide!



Zinchenko with a gorgeous delivery to the backpost with Aguero readying himself to unleash a volley - but the ball is nipped away at the last second by Ake.



Gundogan clips the ball over the Cherries defence into Aguero's path. The striker gets the shot away - it's saved - but the flag is raised.


Easy does it

Tempo has slowed somewhat after that fast-paced start.

City well in control, passing it around comfortably, sizing up potential openings.


On the hunt

City - sporting our traditional blue and white - are kicking from right to left from the tunnel view.

The Blues have started brightly, pressing high and with purpose.

Walker had an early venture into the Bournemouth penalty area but nudged Fraser out of the way en route to the byline.


Lucky 13!

Wednesday night's 1-0 win over West Ham was Oleks Zinchenko's 13th Premier League game for the Blues and he has been on the winning side on each occasion.

Nobody has started with more victories in Premier League history and he’ll be hoping to keep his 100% record going for as long as possible.


Plenty of drama in today's early kick-off - the North London derby!


Team news and tactics

City make four changes from the side that beat West Ham in midweek.

Raheem Sterling, Bernardo and Kyle Walker all step up from the bench for today’s clash with Bournemouth while John Stones returns after a three-match absence.

Leroy Sane, Riyad Mahrez, Danilo and Vincent Kompany make way while Gabriel Jesus returns as a sub.

No Fernandinho means Ilkay Gundogan takes on the holding midfield role against the Cherries.

Oleksandr Zinchenko and Walker will flank Stones and Kompany, while Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo make up the midfield trio with Gundogan.

Sane and Sterling join Jesus in attack.


Club Journalist David Clayton:

"City may have a fine record against the Cherries, both home and away, but Pep Guardiola knows from earlier this season and last year’s trip to the Vitality that this is game is a potential banana skin.

"Bournemouth play slick, attractive football, especially on their own patch and the tight confines of their stadium make this a tricky game.

"If Callum Wilson returns, he and Josh King are a formidable pairing and will be a threat to the Blues’ back-line.

"Just three defeats in 14 home games this campaign is evidence enough that City will be tested on the south coast."



Raheem Sterling has scored in all six of his Premier League meetings with AFC Bournemouth.

He could become the fourth player to score in seven consecutively against an opponent in the competition, and the first since Romelu Lukaku in October 2016 versus West Ham United. 


Did you know...?

β€’ City have a 100 per cent win record against the Cherries, scoring 24 goals and conceding just three.

β€’ City's seven victories is the best in Premier League history and joint-best in top-flight history along with Brighton & Hove Albion against Wolverhampton Wanderers (also seven wins out of seven).

β€’ AFC Bournemouth are looking for a first league victory over City in 14 attempts.

β€’ City have won all six of our Premier League matches on the south coast under Pep Guardiola, with our last such defeat coming at Southampton in May 2016.


Pep's pre-match thoughts...

"We are one point below (Liverpool) and many things are going to happen.

"We don't think if we win everything is perfect, or if we lose it is a disaster. We don't think too much.

"I'm not concerned about the pressure and the future; nobody knows - not even the pundits."


Eddie Howe on City

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe has a reputation for being one of English football's most progressive managers.

And, looking ahead to today's game, he made no secret of his admiration for the Blues and Pep Guardiola.

β€œTheir style of football is a joy to watch. Every time I see them play I feel like I learn something from how they do things,” he said.


Key weekend?

Though Liverpool still hold a one point lead at the top of the Premier League table, if we can secure a victory on the South Coast it would move us back into top spot... for 24 hours at least.

And Liverpool, of course, face the small prospect of the Merseyside derby when they travel to Everton on Sunday afternoon.

Could it be a pivotal weekend in what is proving a thrilling title race?


Good morning Blues...

It's matchday!

A very good morning, Blues. Ready for another huge game?

Just three days after our vital 1-0 win over West Ham, we're back in Premier League action as we face a tricky trip to take on Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium, kick-off 3pm.

As always, we'll have all the build-up, live coverage and post-match reaction right here so stay tuned!

Other games that day

  • Tottenham Hotspur1
  • West Ham United2
    Newcastle United0
  • Brighton and Hove Albion1
    Huddersfield Town0
  • Wolverhampton Wanderers2
    Cardiff City0
  • Burnley1
    Crystal Palace3
  • Manchester United3

As it stood

P GD Pts
2 Liverpool 28 +49 69
3 Tottenham Hotspur 29 +26 61
4 Manchester United 29 +20 58
5 Arsenal 29 +22 57
6 Chelsea 27 +18 53
7 Wolverhampton Wanderers 29 +2 43
8 Watford 28 -1 40
9 West Ham United 29 -4 39
10 Everton 28 0 36
11 Leicester City 28 -5 35
12 Bournemouth 29 -15 34
13 Crystal Palace 29 -4 33
14 Newcastle United 29 -10 31
15 Brighton and Hove Albion 28 -11 30
16 Burnley 29 -21 30
17 Southampton 29 -17 27
18 Cardiff City 29 -32 25
19 Fulham 28 -37 17
20 Huddersfield Town 29 -36 14
Link To Full Table