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Manchester City vs Leeds United at Etihad Stadium

Etihad Stadium Referee : Andre Marriner
10th April 2021 12:30 PM (BST)
  • 1 Manchester City

    • ‘76' Ferran Torres
  • 2 Leeds United

    • ‘42' Stuart Dallas
    • ‘90'+1' Stuart Dallas


Commentary By Caroline Oatway


Until next time ๐Ÿ‘‹

That's all from me.

Disappointing result today but hopefully, it won't prove too significant in our hunt for silverware.

Onwards and upwards to Wednesday's crucial Champions League clash - with plenty of lessons learned, I'm sure, and a hunger to progress.



Guardiola (on rotation) ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"Yes, it is the reason when we lose! When we win, I am a genius. 

"I do not regret it because I trust them. If I didn't trust them, they would not play. 

"Everyone was good. It was a game of transitions. We had to avoid it, they did it. 

"We defended their goal-kick well - short and long. 

"At 10 v 11, we need inspiration and don't let them run. We did it for a long time but then Raphinha had a chance and Ederson saved and then they scored.

"When you attack and attack and attack, you have to control and not let them run."


Guardiola ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"What happens when you lose games is that you realise how difficult what we have done so far is. 

"You realise how difficult it is to win 27 in 29 games. 

"We need points still because our opponents can win more points - but we have three finals. 

"I have incredible confidence with the guys. Defeat sometimes is necessary to understand what we have done."


Pep Guardiola ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"Congratulate Leeds first of all. Secondly, 11 v 11 was a game where we made two actions but we controlled.

"Our build-up was good and we created some clear chances. 

"Then, we made a mistake... we didn't defend it well and they scored a goal. 

"Then after that, they defended man-to-man. We controlled for 40 minutes but before the goal, we let them run and we lost the game. 

"Sometimes with Leeds, they create more chances and lose. 

"Everyone has a plan as a manager. We gave them the first goal and after we create chances - not too many clear... Our crosses were not precise. They deserved it."


Ferran Torres ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"We are obviously sad for the result but the good thing is that we're still top of the table with a good margin.

"We know Bielsa's teams run a lot. They are a difficult team to beat and when they went down to ten men, they stayed back and made it difficult.

"We created a lot of chances but couldn't score them today.

"Every game in the Premier League is difficult but in every game, for us, we need to focus on our game and try to win.

"Now, we need to turn the page and focus on the Champions League game.

"It doesn't stop and we want to be in the semi-finals."


Pep Guardiola ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"The best moment we had, we conceded a goal. We arrived in the final position but unfortunately, today we could not score a goal. 

"In the second half, we were there. We didn't create enough, maybe we could do more - but to play against a team like that, we have to control the sides and we could not do it. 

"In the last game in the Champions League, Bayern Munich had 36 shots and PSG had 5... PSG won. We had a lot of shots but not many clear chances.  

"Always when we play, I think we can win. We play the game as well as possible. We tried but couldn't do it.

"In transition, they are fantastic. Congratulations to Leeds."


Nathan Ake ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"Itโ€™s frustrating. We knew it would be tough before the game but the manner we conceded wasnโ€™t good. 

"We pushed and couldn't score the second. After the game, itโ€™s easier to say [there was too much attack]. 

"We left ourselves a little too open and they are a very good counter-attacking team. They finished well. 

"How we came out in the second half was good. We tried to create. It's difficult when the whole team is behind the ball. When you get the first one back, you feel you can push on but then we were open.

"Maybe you can say that [we lacked rhythm]. We need to make sure we are tight at the back and we didn't today.

"We move on. Obviously, we'll reflect on this and then play a big game on Wednesday."


Kevin Horlock ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"We were wasteful at times but give Leeds credit. They stuck to it, picked their moments when to break forward and did it to perfection.

"Wednesdayโ€™s game is a lot bigger than today's but Pep will be annoyed. He's a serial winner. It was a bad day at the office today. 

"Itโ€™s different if youโ€™re losing a run of games - this squad can win any game at any time. It was a blip today but I expect City to be all guns blazing Wednesday and I hope to see them in the semis."


Michael Brown ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"City did everything - controlled possession, 29 shots to two shows the domination but shows how cruel football can be.

"Credit to Leeds, who kept going. I played in many games where youโ€™re wondering how you've lost the game."

""Itโ€™s hard to be critical - it's been an unbelievable run. Games have come thick and fast and this is what happens in the Premier League."



That's that.

City fall to a 2-1 defeat to ten-man Leeds.

Despite dominating, Pep Guardiola's men are undone by two goals on the counter-attack, having spurned so many chances to level and then go ahead.

Stuart Dallas with both goals for the visitors, sandwiching Ferran Torres' equaliser.



Football really is a funny old game.

City were so on top, pressing and pressing for a winner, spurning chance after chance - and then one single counter attack and Leeds strike.


Goal for Leeds. 1-2.


Talk about a smash and grab.

Dallas races through and slides under Ederson to surely hand the visitors all three points.


Argh! ๐Ÿ˜

I thought it was in!

Bernardo Silva cuts inside and curls for the top corner.

It's *just* over the bar!

Can we find a winner...?!


Brilliant from Ederson!

Raphinha tries to round the City shot-stopper, who slides in with his feet!

It had to be absolutely perfect and it was - Ederson dispossessed the Leeds man with an excellent tackle.



Just when you start to think it's not going to be our day, a moment of magic!

Fernandinho plays Bernardo through, who beats the offside trap and cuts back for Torres and the forward sweeps home beautifully!



Great effort

Fernandinho looks to take matters into his own hands with a powerful drive, which Meslier tips over.

We're testing him more now.



David Clayton at the Etihad ๐Ÿ“

"Leeds holding on and you feel we will break through eventually - but we haven't really tested the Leeds 'keeper yet. 

"If we get one, we'll probably go and win it but we need to be a bit more inventive around the box. 

"Stones has been outstanding."



Stones actually just tried one from range.

It was comfortable for Meslier but the next one will 100% fly into the top corner. You mark my words!

(Okay, he just tried another one and it was a daisy-cutter...)

From the rebound, Gundogan can't quite reach to convert before Bernardo somehow smashes wide!


Rolling Stones

Stonesy has been superb today. Particularly in this half, he's playing like an accomplished central midfielder - almost a playmaker.

When he embarks on those runs forward, I get flashbacks of Kompany against Leicester, which is weird because it's Vinny's birthday today.

Does that mean Stones will bag a 35-yard worldie...?


Knocking on the door

Torres looks for Sterling at the near post. He makes contact but under pressure, can't quite divert the ball on target.


Good effort

Zinchenko looks for the far corner with a low drive... it's well-saved by Meslier, who then gathers before Sterling can convert the rebound.

Much better. Keep pushing.



City applying the pressure in the early period of the half, without yet testing Meslier...

Imagine it will be one-way traffic for much of this half but we'll need to be aware of the counter.


Forward thinking

Stones with a driving run towards the Leeds penalty area - he saw the space and decided to go for it.

He's clipped about five yards outside the area and City have a free-kick...


Kevin Horlock ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"It's been a little bit lacklustre at times. 

"I want more forward runs and want the ball speed to be higher. We thought Leeds would score but I didn't expect them to be ahead at the break. 

"Raphinha looks a real threat - with Mendy and Cancelo going a bit higher, it does leave us a little exposed. I expect more from City in the second half."


DC at the Etihad ๐Ÿ“

"All to do in the second-half - would like to see Foden or De Bruyne brought on at some stage. We need a playmaker to take advantage of Leeds being down to 10 men."


Analysis ๐Ÿ“

A frustrating half for City. We've had chances but have lacked confidence in front of goal - and the decision-making at times has let us down.

We had been building a decent period of pressure before Leeds' opener on the counter. We'll be disappointed with the manner of that goal too.

Drama at the end of the half with Cooper sent off for a lunge on Gabriel Jesus... Need to capitalise on that as soon as possible in the second period.

Imagine we'll see changes fairly soon.



That's the half.

Plenty to discuss but the most important thing: City trail at the break, courtesy of Stuart Dallas' strike.

Work to do...


Red card ๐ŸŸฅ

Having seen the replay, Marriner acknowledges the recklessness of the challenge and changes the yellow card to a red!

Leeds down to ten.



Just as we'd looked to be gaining a foothold, Leeds break the deadlock on the counter.

Costa did well on the left to muscle his way onto a long ball before finding Bamford, who laid-off for Dallas to strike.


What a chance! ๐Ÿ˜ฉ

Fernandinho with a superb run to drive into the penalty area, escaping the attentions of Roberts and Cooper with some quick feet.

He cuts back for Sterling but he drags the effort wide!

Should have done better, really...


Our man at the ground - DC at the Etihad ๐Ÿ“

"Entertaining game so far and we're starting to create some good chances. 

"It's a bit like a game of chess with Pep v Bielsa - two great minds trying to stay a step ahead of the other."


Having a go

Sterling eager to impress today.

He cuts inside and tries a curler towards the far corner - his specialty - but this one is hit too high.


Good chance!

Zinchenko whips in a free-kick to the penalty spot and finds Torres - but the forward gets too much on his header and it sails over the bar.

There was plenty of pushing and shirt-pulling there in the area! Nothing given though - not even a VAR check!


Better ๐Ÿ‘

Great play from Stones to release Fernandinho.

The Brazilian crosses to the near post but it's too close to Meslier and the goalkeeper's outstretched leg clears the danger.



Heart-in-mouth moment there, as Meslier almost lets a backpass roll under his foot. The Leeds shot-stopper recovers though before the trickling ball can cross the line.


Penalty claim

Two shouts for a spot-kick, as Sterling attacks down the left - the first for an alleged Ayling handball; the second a suggested trip.

Referee Marriner waves away both protests.



Two huge blocks to deny Torres and then Gabriel Jesus.

A corner isn't cleared and both players look certain to score on the half-volley but flying bodies - the first: Cooper - somehow deny an opener!


A word from DC at the Etihad ๐Ÿ“

"Leeds have started confidently and are having joy down our left flank - Raphinha is a handful and causing problems. 

"Another thing is that a few players will be checking their footwear at the break - the surface is very slippy."


Fine margins

Stones may have *just* nudged the ball off course with that cross, diverting it narrowly out of Bamford's path with the tiniest of touches.

An important interception if he did!

At the other end, Sterling tries his luck from range but it's over the bar.



What a chance for Leeds!

Again, the visitors press down the right and the ball is driven across the goal for Bamford to surely convert... but he completely misses the ball!

Huge let-off!



Leeds enjoying more of the possession in recent moments, looking to find joy down the right.

Raphinha has looked dangerous, as expected... Need to address that.


Safe hands

Ederson called into action for the first time to collect a looping ball.

Meanwhile, Gabriel Jesus is moving around quite gingerly at the moment... He was down a moment ago.

Hopefully, he can shake it off...



Slippery surface out there today - an effect of the crazy weather.

Quite a few players have slipped already in the opening minutes. Could prove to be a huge factor...



Lovely feet from Torres to jink a yard of space.

Not sure whether his strike was a cross or shot but it hit Mendy, who was in an offside position and couldn't divert the ball on target anyway.



Early warning for the hosts, as Raphinha finds himself in space down the right flank.

He cuts the ball back into the box but thankfully it's behind his target Bamford and City are able to clear.


War of the Roses ๐ŸŒน

The snow is a distant memory, as the action unfolds on a sun-soaked pitch.

City, sporting our traditional blue and white of course, dominating possession from the off.

Leeds all in maroon today.


Paying respects

Before we begin, there will be two minutes of silence to mark the passing of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh yesterday.

The players gather around the centre circle.


It's almost time... โŒ›

Out come the two teams at the (now sunny) Etihad Stadium.

It's expected to be a cracker with plenty of goals... (Cue a 0-0 draw...)


More from DC at the Etihad ๐Ÿ“

๐Ÿ’ฌ "This will probably curse it but you can see a few goals in this game. 

"City and Leeds produced 35 shots in the first meeting - 23 for City and 12 for Leeds. The hosts had seven of those on target while City had just two.

"Leeds also edged possession 52%-48% - that doesn't happen often to a Pep Guardiola team..."


Kevin Horlock (on Leeds) ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"Bielsa is obviously good - listening to Pep makes that clear. 

"I am pleased Leeds are back. They had tough years but itโ€™s good for the Premier League and as Pep says, they have manager who can keep them progressing. 

"They are exciting to watch and thereโ€™s normally goals. They are high-energy and attack in numbers and thatโ€™s something City don't normally get. 

"Iโ€™m hoping for an open game. It could be attacking, end to end."


Ferran Torres ๐Ÿ’ฌ

(On having to be patient for a return to the starting XI): "Yeah, obviously I haven't started in a while but I am always working so I am ready when we get a chance. 

"I will work to make sure we get the three points.

"Every game for us is a test - we have to focus on us and play our style. If we do that, we will be closer to the three points. 

"We know them very well. We know the manager and the style they play but if we do our game, we can win the three points."


Live from the Etihad Stadium ๐Ÿ“

The snow has ceased and now we have glorious sunshine bathing our beloved city.

Our roving reporter today is Mr David Clayton, who has experienced all four seasons in one morning on his drive in to the ground...

๐Ÿ’ฌ "Yes, folks โ€“ weโ€™re well into April and it is absolutely freezing here at the Etihad. On the drive to the stadium I had hail, snow, slush and freezing rain. Welcome to Manchester!"


๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Gabriel Jesus is one goal away from becoming just the second Brazilian player to reach 50 Premier League goals, emulating Roberto Firmino.


Guardiola ๐Ÿ’ฌ

(On Sergio Aguero): "He has niggles. He had  a problem over the last  three, four days and didn't train."

(On Aymeric Laporte): "Laporte yesterday didn't feel good. He had pain in his hips. The doctor said they were not ready."

(On Marcelo Bielsa): "He doesn't say anything for the gallery, the media, to make himself more brilliant. In his teams, always he thinks for spectators. It doesn't matter who he plays against - a fourth division team or Bayern Munich. He is a joy for people who love football. He helped me a lot when I started and in bad moments he was there to give advice. For his success, I am happy for him."


Pep Guardiola ๐Ÿ’ฌ

(On Leeds): "It's going to be tough. No team in the Premier League when they face Leeds think it will be comfortable with the way they play but we are ready to play and try to play well."

(On Nathan Ake): "He was injured for a long time. Heโ€™s trained for the last three weeks and the most pleased I am as a manager is to give minutes to a nice person. He is always ready, he is beloved by his teammates and happy he can play."

(On Raheem Sterling): "He is an important player for us. Everything we achieved in the last years is impossible without him but in the last games, Riyad and Phil were outsnaidng and they played."


Team news and tactics โšฝ

Seven changes for City, as Nathan Ake, Benjamin Mendy, Fernandinho Oleks Zinchenko, Ferran Torres, Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus are restored to the starting XI.

It's a first start since Boxing Day for Ake, as he returns from a muscular injury.

Ederson, Joao Cancelo, John Stones and Bernardo Silva are the four who keep their place from our midweek win over Borussia Dortmund.

Sergio Aguero and Aymeric Laporte miss out with Kun injured and Laporte short of full fitness.


The opposition โšช

โ–ซ Leeds United's tally of 42 points is their highest after 30 games of a Premier League campaign since 2001/02, when they had 51 points and went on to finish fifth.

โ–ซ Marcelo Bielsa's side are yet to draw a Premier League away fixture this season (W7, L8).

โ–ซ They could win three consecutive Premier League matches for the first time since 2002/03 under Terry Venables. That run was ended by a 2-1 defeat against City at Maine Road.


Research ๐Ÿ“š

Pep Guardiola said in his pre-match press conference he spent 20 hours on Thursday, watching footage of Leeds, analysing how to beat them!

Guardiola and Marcelo Bielsa share a mutual admiration for each other - particularly their tactical brains.

Leeds have enjoyed a positive return to the Premier League, earning a reputation as the league's 'entertainers' in the early part of the campaign with their high-intensity, attacking play.

It will be fascinating to see how the two sides - and two managers - approach the game today.


Did you know...? ๐Ÿ‘€

๐Ÿ”น City need 11 points from our remaining seven league fixtures to guarantee winning a fifth Premier League title.

๐Ÿ”น We have won 27 of our past 28 matches in all competitions and are unbeaten in 41 home matches against newly-promoted sides since a 2-0 defeat by Reading in February 2007 (W36, D5).

๐Ÿ”น Pep Guardiola's men have kept an unrivalled 17 Premier League clean sheets this season - just three behind our top-flight record set in 2018/19 - and have only conceded nine league goals since the turn of the year, preserving shut-outs in 10 of our 17 top-flight games during that period.


The best? ๐Ÿค”

Reckon that could be the most spectacular City goal I've ever seen in person...

Aside from the obvious choices of our *greatest* goals, that one was sensational in its execution - and the fact it was hit by a left-back!

Volleys are my favourite kind of goal, especially when they're struck as sweetly as that one.

Any spring to your mind that were as aesthetically pleasing as that one?


Marcelo Bielsa ๐Ÿ’ฌ

โ€œBoth teams aim for creativity and this helps in building a good spectacle.

โ€œThe team will be subject to a big, big test against the leaders Manchester City and we will see how the team has evolved. 

โ€œThree years now weโ€™ve been trying to play in one way, but when youโ€™re trying to play in a certain way there is always things to correct. 

โ€œIf you change the way you play, then you start another process. I always think you have to improve the way you want to play rather than choose a different way to play.โ€

(On Pep Guardiola, speaking to DAZN): "He's a magical man.

"What he knows how to do is extremely difficult for me to try [to copy] and Iโ€™ve already given up, but I have genuine admiration for what he does.

"Interpreting the novel decisions that he incorporates into a game is already a way of falling in love with football."


Believe it or not, it is currently snowing in Manchester. In celebration, here is a gif of The Greatest Snow-man ๐ŸŽฉ (I know, I'm sorry...)


Form guide ๐Ÿ“ˆ

Cityโ€™s scintillating form continued in midweek, with Phil Foden's late winner enough to edge out Borussia Dortmund 2-1 in the first leg of our Champions League quarter-final.

In the process, it extended our unprecedented run of 27 victories in our last 28 matches, and another triumph would move us 17 points clear at the Premier League summit for 24 hours at least.

Nonetheless, Leeds also come into the game brimming with confidence, with consecutive 2-1 wins over Fulham and Sheffield United respectively rekindling faint hopes of a push for Europe.


Guardiola (on Marcelo Bielsa) ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"If there is one person who can find the secrets, it is him. His work ethic, his knowledge of the game... I know how tough 12.30pm will be.

"His teams are one team before his arrival and then when heโ€™s gone, his teams are always better. You see it.

"For world football, itโ€™s a joy. A guy who respects opponents and play for fans, spectators. He doesn't just play for victory, he convinces players to follow him.

"Thatโ€™s why I recognise the best. People say he didn't win titles - give him Manchester City and he will win titles.

"Always his players become better players. That is a sign when the manager is good."


Pep Guardiola (on Leeds) ๐Ÿ’ฌ

"I hope we are prepared to compete. We are three games away and [the game] is a big step.

"The players know from the first game how difficult it was and [this game] will not be an exception.

"Being promoted last season, already safe with 42 points and seven games left - they do incredibly well all season. 

"I admire a lot of things they do, especially how they behave on the pitch.

"It doesn't matter the opposition or competition, they demand you do things you are not used to. Itโ€™s a challenge."


Early team news ๐Ÿ“‹

Pep Guardiola says there are injury concerns over two of his players. However, the boss refused to reveal their identity at his pre-match press conference on Friday.

โ€œThere are some doubts about two players,โ€ he said. โ€œThe rest are fit.

โ€œWe will know tomorrow [Saturday - who they are].โ€

For Leeds, Marcelo Bielsa has a fully fit squad at his disposal, although Jack Harrison is unavailable - ineligible to face his parent club as part of his loan agreement. 


We're Not Really Here ๐Ÿ’™

Midfield duo Michael Brown and Kevin Horlock are the special guests for today's Weโ€™re Not Really Here live show.

WNRH is available to watch on all of our digital platforms and gets underway an hour before kick-off, providing more City-steered coverage.

Brown and Horlock will join presenter Natalie Pike in the studio, before returning to analyse the match at both half-time and after the final whistle.

At full-time, the duo will answer some of your questions and, time permitting, react to the post-match thoughts of Pep Guardiola and a player.

Viewer interaction is always welcomed so, if you want to get involved, use #WNRH on Twitter.


It's matchday! โšฝ

A very good morning/afternoon/evening/night wherever you are in the world!

We're up bright and early in Manchester, as City are back in Premier League action with the visit of Leeds United to the Etihad Stadium in a 12:30pm (UK time) kick-off!

It promises to be an intriguing encounter and as always, we'll have all of the pre-match build-up, live coverage and post-match reaction right here in the Matchday Centre.

How are you feeling ahead of the game? Let us know on Twitter using #WNRH


Other games that day

  • Liverpool2
    Aston Villa1
  • Crystal Palace1
  • Tottenham Hotspur0
    Manchester United0
  • West Ham United0
    Leicester City0
  • Sheffield United0
  • Burnley0
    Newcastle United0

As it stood

P GD Pts
2 Manchester United 30 +25 60
3 Leicester City 30 +19 56
4 Chelsea 31 +19 54
5 Liverpool 31 +16 52
6 West Ham United 30 +11 52
7 Tottenham Hotspur 30 +19 49
8 Everton 29 +3 47
9 Leeds United 31 0 45
10 Aston Villa 30 +10 44
11 Arsenal 30 +5 42
12 Wolverhampton Wanderers 31 -10 38
13 Crystal Palace 31 -19 38
14 Southampton 30 -14 36
15 Burnley 30 -16 33
16 Brighton and Hove Albion 30 -5 32
17 Newcastle United 30 -20 29
18 Fulham 32 -18 26
19 West Bromwich Albion 30 -34 21
20 Sheffield United 30 -35 14
Link To Full Table