Man United 2 Man City 0
Manchester United beat their noisy neighbours for the third time this season on Sunday and in doing so they edged Liverpool ever closer to the Premier League title.
United’s 2-0 defeat of Man City at an ecstatic Old Trafford means Liverpool - whose win against Bournemouth on Saturday has given them a 25 point advantage over the Sky Blues - need just two more victories to get their hands on a trophy they last held in 1990.
Points mean prizes
For United, who have beaten City in their two league encounters this season (for the first time in a decade) as well as the second leg of the Carabao Cup semi final, the win was imperative after Chelsea had thrashed Everton 4-0 earlier in the day. The Blues are fourth with 48 points but United are just three behind after a weekend when both Wolves and Tottenham dropped points in the fight for the precious fourth place.
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United are now unbeaten in their last five league matches but it’s unlikely they will again encounter a goalkeeper this season as generous as Ederson was at Old Trafford. The City stopper had a shocker with the Brazilian at fault for both goals.
His first gaffe came on the half hour when Bruno Fernandes quick free-kick found Anthony Martial whose innocuous shot squirmed under Ederson’s body and into the net. Then in the dying moments of the match, as City desperately chased an equaliser, Ederson hurled his clearance straight into the path of Scott McTominay who struck the ball back past the Brazilian.
“He is an extraordinary keeper,” said Guardiola, when asked about Ederson’s performance. “Next time he will do better. Sometimes it happens.”
Sergio Aguero had a goal ruled out for offside by VAR and United felt they should have had a penalty when Fred clashed with Nicolas Otamendi, but the three points rightly belonged to United. “It’s a privilege to be their manager,” said a jubilant Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of his side, now unbeaten in their last ten competitive matches. “We feel we are improving as a squad and a team. We feel the fans want us to do well and they see what we are doing, so it is getting better and better. But we are still fifth. We need points to catch Chelsea and Leicester, so need to keep plugging away.”
How they reacted to the Red Devils victory:
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: ”The desire, attitude, commitment, connection between fans and players pleased me most.”
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola: “We did our game but unfortunately we conceded a goal. They waited for our mistakes.”
Manchester United goalscorer Scott McTominay,: “That was such a sweet moment...It’s such a beautiful feeling to score like that in front of the fans. But we can’t get too carried away and need to keep pushing for the Champions League.”
Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva: ”It was a bad game for us. Not acceptable... a team like ours cannot lose this many games. We need to check what’s not going right and try not to make so many mistakes.”
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