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Manchester City vs Brighton and Hove Albion at Etihad Stadium

FT
Etihad Stadium Referee : Darren England
13th January 2021 6:00 PM (GMT)
  • 1 Manchester City

    • ‘44' Phil Foden
  • 0 Brighton and Hove Albion

#mancity

Commentary By Neil Leigh

21:49

Signing off 👋


Right, that's all from me after another crucial win for City.

Four straight league wins and seven in all competitions is some going.

Next up for us is another Premier League home game against Crystal Palace on Sunday 17 January.

Kick-off is at 19.15pm (UK) and you can follow all the action here in our Matchday Centre on mancity.com, so hopefully you can join us.

See you then!

20:55

More from the boss...👇🏻

 "I said before, Graham Potter is a great manager - he is the best English manager they had courage to play the way they do - I’m happy we had the ball but they showed their quality right to the end. "

20:54

Pep's verdict...

 Pep Guardiola

"I said many times what I think about Phil - the number of games, goals and KM he runs for the team - he’s a guy close to the club and has a special instinct - his standards are higher and he deserves to play

"I try and judge the team day by day,  on recent performances and he lives 24 hours for football. I feel he could play every 24 hours! He’s happy when he plays or when his training."

20:10

True grit

It may not have been the type of game that will live long in the memory.

But performances like tonight where you have to fight for everything ae the bedrock of successful teams.

Could be a crucial three points come the end of the season. 

20:06

'Time to keep pushing'

Phil Foden

"We know we have a game in hand now and we have to think of the next opponent, and not look too far ahead. We want to keep this form 

"We want to keep pushing and try to win the league hopefully."
 

20:02

More from Phil...👇🏻

Phil Foden

"I don't score too many right footed so when they come along, I enjoy and it’s always nice.

"It was a good goal. I always like being in the box. I want to keep scoring goals and I’m enjoying it at the moment."
 

20:00

Phil Foden's reaction...⬇️

Phil Foden:

"It definitely feels like we’re back to our best. We’re definitely taking confidence from the performances. We dug deep to get the win. 

"Overall I’m very proud of the team and how we kept going until the final whistle and it’s a great result."
 

19:53

Three cheers

That win has moved us up to third place in the table ahead of Spurs' game later tonight.

14 games unbeaten now - and another clean sheet.

Happy days!!

Open
83'

City change

Sterling is on with Phil Foden the man to make way and Raheem is straight into the action with a shot that is blocked in the box.

67'

Solid Seagulls

I have been impressed with Brighton.

They have come to play not just shut up shop and caused us a few problems.

Can see why Pep was so complimentary about Graham Potter's side.

Open
65'

Save

Sanchez denies City at the double.

First he is there to block a Joao Cancelo effort after a brilliant run by the defender and then backs it up by keeping out a De Bruyne drive.

Fine work by the keeper.

59'

Chance

Now Brighton sweep forward and Mac Allister - who has been impressive all night - turns inside and sends a fine shot just over the bar.

We could so with a second goal.

Brighton are not out of this.

Open
59'

Hit the bar!!!

Double chance!! - Sanchez with a superb close range save to deny Gundogan and then from the rebound Bernardo swivels and smacks his shot against the bar.

So close to a second!

47'

Almost a minute of probing by City but Brighton keep their shape well and Burn diverts the ball for a corner as Mahrez presses' him on the right flank.

HT

'A fascinating set-up'

Michael Brown

"It had to be balanced and with a structure, and wear Brighton down, it was a great right-footed finish.

"I’m sure at half-time Pep will find a way to create a little bit more. It’s really fascinating the way we’ve set up."
 

HT

'First goal was crucial'

Paul Dickov

"The first goal tonight was always going to be important. I think it’s all about his movement for me.

"People say Phil's too one sided, but he’s got one with his right with a great finish into the corner. The goal was coming."
 

HT

Enter Raheem?

 

From John Edwards at the Etihad:

"Raheem Sterling was warming up on the touchline for the vast majority of the opening 45-minutes and in shorts (it's cold!)

"He's not stayed out during the break, but the length of his warm-up would suggest we may see him introduced in the second half."

44'

What a feeling

The Stockport Iniesta is there again with another vital strike!.

De Bruyne with the assist (who else), Foden drifted inside and then dispatched a superb low show inside the near post past Sanchez.

What a time to score!!

40'

End to end...

Brighton win a corner but Trossard's set piece is gathered by Ederson,

City steam forward instantly and a Foden's run sees the ball find De Bruyne bursting into the box who fires in a swift shot which Sanchez does well to save.


38'

No handball

Now Dunk flings himself to the ball in the box to stop Foden's cross.

VAR says no handball - City pushing forward at every opportunity here.

37'

What a tackle

Superb curling ball from De Bruyne looks set to find the onrushing Mahrez but Bernardo is there just in time to clear the ball for a corner.

Crucial stop that.

33'

Now Webster stands tall to block De Bruyne's shot in the centre of the box after the Belgian opened up a fraction of space.

City being frustrated at every turn here so far.

26'

Arghh

More neat and patient play on the edge of the Brighton sees De Bruyne send in an inviting dinked ball but Mahrez is unable to keep it alive.

Better.

25'

Close!

Brilliant teasing ball from Mahrez causes havoc in the Brighton box and as Gundogan tries to pounce at the far post Veltman hacks the ball 

23'

Leading man 💪

From John Edwards at the Etihad

"John Stones has earned a lot of praise for his performances this season and he's developing into a real leader, too. 

"The 26-year-old has been a booming voice at the heart of City's defence so far this evening. Organising, praising, motivating - he's doing it all.

"And he's getting plenty of encouragement from the backroom staff and substitutes."

18'

Graham Potter will be very happy with the way his players have gone about the first 18 minutes or so.

Brighton are well organised and compact and making life tough for City.

14'

Save..

Some real quality there from City and Brighton keeper Robert Sanchez has to be alert to narrow the angle and deny De Bruyne from close range after great work by Gundogan.

Best moment of the game so far.

10'

 From John Edwards at the Etihad:

The early exchanges would suggest it's going to be a typically fluid approach from City. Right-back Joao Cancelo is playing like an additional midfielder when we are in possession and up front, Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva seem to be sharing responsibility for leading the line - a tactic which worked to wonderful effect in the first leg of last season's Carabao Cup semi-final win over Manchester United.

4'

Nearly...

Some Bernardo trickery and Gundogan tries to force is way into the box but the German's touch is just to heavy.

City already moving nicely on and off the ball with our formation fluid and interchanging.

17:55

Almost ready...💙

Teams about to enter the field.

Looking forward to this... awful weather - let's hope for some beautiful football from Pep's lads.

17:48

'Ferna a fantastic and humble guy'

Paul Dickov on Fernandinho:

"I think people within the Club already knew how good job he was doing, but now everyone on the outside are realising. I love him.

"He’s not just one of the best defensive midfielders in Europe, but in the world.

"He’s a fantastic and humble guy and you can see the love the players have for him the way they celebrated with him after his goal at Old Trafford."
 

17:39

'Unplayable Mahrez'

Michael Brown:

"When he’s smiling and enjoying his football, it’s brilliant. If there is space there for him, he can cut left or right, he likes to come inside. 

"Once he’s in the box, you can’t go near him. I wouldn’t want to play against him! At times he’s unplayable!"
 

17:35

Quality street

Paul Dickov on City's attack:

"They’ve been in fantastic form recently. We just need to work out who’s playing where! It’s going to be interesting. What we do know is that there is a load of quality there.

"De Bruyne is one of the best players in the world and Foden is one of the best young players in the world.

"All four of the attackers are intelligent, they can play any of the positions up there and I don’t think there will be anything set in stone, they’ll be rotating."
 

17:29

Pep's pre-match thoughts 💬

 Pep Guardiola:

"All the clubs are fighting at the time in a strange situation. Bernardo? It was nice for him to score goals and hopefully for his confidence it will be good.

"Gabriel and Kyle played almost 90 minutes on Sunday and now another game three days later so I wanted to handle their situations (following their recovery from COVID)."

 

17:27

Stat attack (part three)...📈

 🔹 Brighton are winless in their past eight top-flight matches, a streak exceeded only by bottom side Sheffield United.

 🔹 The Seagulls are without a victory in all 13 of their Premier League matches in January (D6, L7) and likewise in all nine matches played on a Wednesday (D5, L4).

17:24

Bench press 💙

So much strength in depth to our squad and that is again illustrated tonight with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus, Kyle Walker, Fernandinho and Benjamin Mendy amongst those waiting in the wings.


Options aplenty for the boss!!

17:18

Ruben Dias's pre-match thoughts...👇

"I think we are in an incredible moment right now. We are just taking every game step by step, each game at a time and we want to continue.

"We are proud that we’ve not been conceding many goals, that's a proud moment for us defenders and the whole team, because it begins with the strikers.

If we concede less, then we have a bigger chance to win. We want games to come, because we are ready for them."

 

17:10

'Stones playing with style'

Michael Brown:

"I think the manager always believed in John Stones. He needed a run in the team and playing with style.

"He also needed a team brimming with confidence and now he is getting back to his best.

"Nobody can take the ball with composure like Stones, the way he brings it out. He’s doing it for City week in week out."
 

17:08

City are back!

Paul Dickov:

"I can’t see a slip up today, not with the form we’ve been in, especially in the last month or two - the Manchester City of old are back!"
 

17:00

TUNE IN 📺

Tune in NOW to join special guests Paul Dickov and Michael Brown for the latest edition of our matchday show 'We're Not Really Here' !

17:00

Here's how we line up tonight... ⚽️

  

CITY XI: Ederson, Cancelo, Stones, Dias, Zinchenko, Rodrigo, Gundogan, Bernardo, De Bruyne (c), Foden, Mahrez

Subs: Steffen, Walker, Sterling, Jesus, Torres, Mendy, Fernandinho, Harwood-Bellis, Mbete

16:57

Stat attack (part two)...📈

 🔹 City have conceded seven goals since the start of October, four fewer than any other Premier League side.

 🔹 Ilkay Gundogan has three goals in Manchester City's past four league matches, following a run of 12 months and 21 games without a top-flight goal.

16:53

Tight at the top

There's a congested look to the top of the Premier League table with just seven points separating seventh laced Southampton from leaders Manchester United who assumed top spot last night.

City are currently in sixth position on 29 points but with a crucial two games in hand on most of our rivals.

Another three points tonight would really move us up into contention.

16:45

Elsewhere tonight...

There's one other Premier League game this evening.

Fifth-placed Tottenham who are just one place above us in the table play host to Fulham at the Tottenham Hotspur stadium, Kick-off in North London is at 8.15pm (UK).

16:42

Stat attack...📈

 🔹 City have won all six Premier League meetings with the Seagulls, scoring 20 goals and conceding just twice.

 🔹 Brighton have never won a league match away to City (D2, L8).

16:39

More from Joao Cancelo 💬

Joao Cancelo:

"I think both myself and my team-mates feel we improve as players every day that we spend under his command. Without a doubt, he is [a demanding manager].

“Exigency is something we don't miss in our daily routines. I think players with our quality and our level need to have that exigency to be better footballers.”

16:37

Joao Cancelo on learning from Pep 💬

There's no doubt that Joao Cancelo has emerged as one of our many bright spots so far this season.

The Portuguese defender has been in outstanding form and he spoke earlier this week about how he is finding life at City - and how much he is learning from the boss.

Joao Cancelo:

“One of the reasons why I joined Manchester City was to be managed by Pep Guardiola.

“When I was a kid, I used to follow his FC Barcelona. I enjoyed the style of play he implemented there. That's why I decided to come here.

“With him, it's continuous learning. He is a great manager, you learn with him every day, you become a better player both technically and tactically."

16:26

More from the boss...👇

Pep Guardiola:

"I am a big fan of Graham Potter. Everybody knows what they have to do. They have the courage to play everywhere.

"Everyone has a lot of games, Brighton as well. That's why I am only concerned about tomorrow."

16:25

Pep's pre-match thoughts...👇

The boss was effusive in his praise for both Brighton and the Seagulls manager Graham Potter at his pre-match press conference yesterday.

Pep Guardiola:

"They are a joy to watch. A joy to analyse. At the same time when you see them you are concerned about the quality. I said to the players today, we have to be at a high standard to beat them.

"Forget the results we had in the past. They are better in all departments. They create more than they conceded. The only issue is in the final third."

16:19

Visitors checklist... 📋

🔹 Brighton are without injured trio Danny Welbeck, Aaron Connolly and Tariq Lamptey, while Adam Lallana is unwell and Yves Bissouma is suspended.

 🔹 Steven Alzate could come back into contention following illness.

16:13

Early team news 📋

 

 🔹 Sergio Aguero is one of five City players unavailable for this evening's game, but Raheem Sterling is set to return.

 🔹 Aguero missed Sunday’s FA Cup win over Birmingham City after coming into contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID-19 and his continued self-isolation rules him out of the Seagulls’ visit to the Etihad Stadium.

 🔹 Injury means Nathan Ake and Aymeric Laporte will also be absent, whilst several players, including Eric Garcia, continue to self-isolate due to Coronavirus.

 🔹 However, Sterling’s return is a boost for Guardiola, who confirmed the winger is available again after being left out of the matchday squad against Birmingham.

16:07

It's your shout! 📱

As always, we want to hear your thoughts ahead of tonight's game.

How are you feeling ahead of this one? What would your team be? Score predictions?

Let us know using #WNRH on Twitter and your tweets could feature here in the Matchday Centre and on the We're Not Really Here show.

16:03

TUNE IN 📺

Paul Dickov and Michael Brown are the special guests on today's latest edition of our We're Not Really Here matchday show and they'll join presenter Kyle Walker in the studio at the Etihad Stadium to provide their expert analysis.

The show gets under way at 17.00 (UK), one hour before we kick-off against the Seagulls. It returns at half-time for a brief summary of the opening 45-minutes and again after the full-time whistle for half an hour of post-match analysis.

Paul and Michael are always as compelling to listen to when it comes to City as they were to watch and it promises to be another superb show.

You can watch it all here in our Matchday Centre and the video will automatically appear at the top of the page.

16:00

Midweek greetings! ⚽

Hello, and a very good afternoon to you all!

There's no let up in what is a packed January schedule as we return to Premier League action tonight by playing host to Brighton and Hove Albion.

It's an early tea time kick-off and we get under way at the Etihad at 18.00 (UK) and you can follow all the action right here in our Matchday Centre

I’ll be bringing you live updates throughout the pre-match build-up, as well as all the big match action and post-game reaction as we bid to maintain our superb start to 2021, so do stay tuned!

09:59

Richard Dunne (on Phil Foden) 💬

“He’s a joy to watch. Every time he gets the ball, you don’t know what to expect and he gets you to the edge of your seat.

“It’s all about the Foden finish for me. He’s playing in the false 9 position and his first touch moves it away… his finish into the corner is excellent. The power and precision was outstanding.

“It’s great to see him getting a lot of gametime.

“He’s worked hard, he’s never once said anything about not playing enough and he has knuckled down so it will be a great example to the lads on the bench from the Academy.”

09:52

Last time out ⏪

City head into the game on a 13-game unbeaten run, having won our last six in a row to climbing the Premier League table and secure FA Cup and Carabao Cup progress in the process.

On Sunday, we booked our place in Round Four of the FA Cup with a 3-0 victory over Birmingham - gained with a Bernardo Silva brace and Phil Foden strike in an emphatic first-half display at the Etihad Stadium.

Meanwhile, Brighton have won just one of their last five games in all competitions, defeating Newport County on penalties in the FA Cup at the weekend.

09:46

Cancelo 💬

“My adaptation was difficult, like any time I have moved to a new club.

“You change country, weather, league, everything is different. You need to settle in as quickly as possible but sometimes it is difficult.

“Now, I feel I'm well integrated into the team and in the country, and I just want to improve week by week.

“It's a reason to be proud that such an important manager as Pep Guardiola says those things about me [that I can be even better].

“I just try to do my job, try to contribute to the team with my skills and help the team to achieve its goals.

“That's what we all try to do: use our individual talent to benefit the team.”

09:45

Joao Cancelo (on learning under Pep) 💬

“One of the reasons why I joined Manchester City was to be managed by Pep Guardiola.

“When I was a kid, I used to follow his FC Barcelona. I enjoyed the style of play he implemented there. That's why I decided to come here.

“With him, it's continuous learning. He is a great manager, you learn with him every day, you become a better player both technically and tactically.

“I think both myself and my team-mates feel we improve as players every day that we spend under his command. Without a doubt, he is [a demanding manager].

“Exigency is something we don't miss in our daily routines. I think players with our quality and our level need to have that exigency to be better footballers.”

09:40

We're Not Really Here 💙

Paul Dickov and Michael Brown will be the guests on tonight's We’re Not Really Here matchday show..

The pair – both key components in our 1999 side which secured Division Two play-off glory at Wembley - will join Kyle Walker (the presenter not the player!) in the CityTV studio at the Etihad Stadium.

The pre-match show gets under way at 17:00 (UK) - one hour before we kick-off against Graham Potter's side.

Dickov, of course, netted one of the most memorable goals in City history to force a dramatic injury time equaliser against Gillingham in our1999 play-off final, and enjoyed two memorable spells with the Club.

Brown, voted City’s Player of the Year in the 1997/98 campaign, meanwhile played more than 100 times for the Club.

He went to make more than 500 appearances all told in a successful career that also took in spells with Sheffield United and Tottenham Hotspur amongst others.

The duo will reflect on their own memorable City careers as well as offering their expert analysis as We’re Not Really Here provides you with a City-centric view to your matchday coverage.

The show is available to watch on all our digital platforms and also includes a half-time summary and 30-minutes of post-match reaction when our guests will dissect the game and respond to the fans’ Man of the Match poll, questions, and comments.

We will also hear from a player after the game and, time permitting, watch Guardiola’s post-match press conference.

You can get involved and share your thoughts by using the hashtag #WNRH on Twitter.

09:38

More from Pep 💬

Pep Guardiola is hopeful Sergio Aguero will return to his best form just as City enter the most important stage of the season.

“Hopefully, I wish,” said Guardiola when asked if Aguero can get back to his best.

“He's in a good mood. He was before isolation and of course he will lose some training sessions and will need a little more time and he's a guy that needs training especially with his knee.

“The most important news is that in the last 10-15 days before he went into isolation he was perfect and reacting good. And this is the best news.

“We are in January - the best part of the season is coming and hopefully we can have him.”

09:33

Early team news 📋

Sergio Aguero is one of five Manchester City players unavailable for this evening's game, but Raheem Sterling is set to return.

Aguero missed Sunday’s FA Cup win over Birmingham City after coming into contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID-19 and his continued self-isolation rules him out of the Seagulls’ visit to the Etihad Stadium.

Injury means Nathan Ake and Aymeric Laporte will also be absent, whilst several players, including Eric Garcia, continue to self-isolate due to Coronavirus.

However, Sterling’s return is a boost for Guardiola, who confirmed the winger is available again after being left out of the matchday squad against Birmingham.

09:30

It's matchday! ⚽

A very good morning (or evening or afternoon or night - wherever you are in the world!)

City are back in Premier League action with an 18:00 (UK time) kick-off at home to Brighton and Hove Albion, as we look to continue our recent fine form.

As always, we'll have all of the pre-match build-up right here in the Matchday Centre and on ManCity.com, plus live coverage of the game and all of the post-match reaction.

In the meantime, let us know how you're feeling ahead of the game, or share your favourite memories of facing the Seagulls throughout the years, by sending a tweet and using the hashtag #WNRH.

Come on, City!

Other games that day

  • Aston Villa0
    Tottenham Hotspur0
    P
  • Tottenham Hotspur1
    Fulham1
    FT
  • Leeds United0
    Southampton0
    P
  • Fulham0
    Manchester United0
    KO

As it stood

P GD Pts
1 Manchester United 17 +10 36
2 Liverpool 17 +16 33
4 Leicester City 17 +10 32
5 Everton 17 +7 32
6 Tottenham Hotspur 17 +14 30
7 Southampton 17 +7 29
8 Aston Villa 15 +13 26
9 Chelsea 17 +11 26
10 West Ham United 17 +3 26
11 Arsenal 17 +1 23
12 Leeds United 17 -3 23
13 Crystal Palace 17 -7 22
14 Wolverhampton Wanderers 18 -7 22
15 Newcastle United 17 -9 19
16 Burnley 16 -12 16
17 Brighton and Hove Albion 18 -8 14
18 Fulham 16 -10 12
19 West Bromwich Albion 17 -28 8
20 Sheffield United 18 -20 5
Link To Full Table