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Manchester City had to work long and hard to earn 3 points last night as they hosted Southampton at the Etihad stadium. City were desperate to reclaim the 9-point gap at the top of the table but it did not come easy for them as the visitors put up a surprisingly solid display. It was only in injury time that Raheem Sterling scored the late winner to seal the points for the club in a game which looked like it might end in a draw.
For a club that has dominated every game so far, the Citizens did show a few signs of vulnerability against a mid-table Southampton. Not many of Pep Guardiola’s men were impressive but they did their job eventually. Let’s take a look at how each player fared against Southampton.
The goalkeeper was quite reliable at the back and the moment he surged ahead out of the goal, he drew cheers from the home crowd. However, he could not do much to keep Southampton’s goal out.
Walker did not contribute as much to the attack and seemed like he was lacking focus for major parts of the game. He did his duty at the back but it was not enough.
He received a yellow card quite early which might have restricted him from playing as usual. Kompany provided excellent passes at the back but he looked shaky as the game wore on.
Although he scored the first goal for City, it honestly was more of an own goal from Southampton. City were weak at setpieces in their own box last night and the blame for that can largely br chalked up to him.
Delph provided far too much space for Boufal to score the equaliser for the Saints and that mistake could have cost the club. However, he was decent enough otherwise.
Considering his performances so far, even an average one from him might seem like below par. He looked unusually sloppy last night and perhaps Guardiola should consider resting him for a game or two.
City truly missed David Silva in the midfield. It is not easy for any player to fill Silva’s void and Gundogan barely made any impact.
He almost got booked but Fernandinho was a bit off last night. He provided defensive cover but lacked power when going forward.
He provided a last-gasp winner to seal the 3 points for City and was their best player by a long mile.
Jesus is able to bring a lot more to the club when he plays centrally. Last night, his work-rate was high but the only time he got close to scoring, the shot was saved by Forster.
The prolific Argentine looked lost against Southampton. He had to deal with a lot of high-balls and considering the fact that most of the visitors’ defenders are about 6 feet tall, it was a tough situation for Aguero.
Guardiola turned to him to make an impact and he did bring some urgency to the City attack.
Came on too late and even though City had not clinched the winning goal by then, Bernardo Silva did not add any value.