Manchester City 4-2 Tottenham: Pep Guardiola’s side fight back from two goals down to win

Julian Alvarez
Julian Alvarez scored his first Premier League goal since winning the World Cup with Argentina

Manchester City overpowered Tottenham with a stunning comeback at Etihad Stadium to close the gap on Premier League leaders Arsenal to five points.

Spurs looked to be doing bitter north London rivals Arsenal a huge favor when they scored twice in the closing moments of the first half to leave Pep Guardiola’s side looking at a third successive loss.

Dejan Kulusevski gave Spurs the lead seconds before the break after Rodrigo Bentancur robbed Rodri following Ederson’s poor clearance, then Emerson Royal headed a second after the City keeper could only push out Harry Kane’s shot.

Most inside the Etihad Stadium were frustrated but City, inspired by the outstanding Riyad Mahrez, came flying out after the interval to turn the game on its head with three goals in 12 minutes.

Julian Alvarez scored from close range after Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris could not claim Mahrez’s cross in the 51st minute then Erling Haaland headed in from close range two minutes later to draw City level.

Spurs almost regained the lead when Ivan Perisic’s shot was deflected onto the woodwork by Rico Lewis before Mahrez completed City’s comeback, winning a challenge before beating Lloris at his near post.

The France veteran was at fault once again after his own goal set Arsenal on their way to victory in the derby on Sunday.

Mahrez completed a brilliant individual display when he raced clear in stoppage time to lift a clever finish over Lloris for City’s fourth.

Man City show champion class

Manchester City left the pitch at half-time with heads bowed and their jeering supporters frustrated, mainly by what they felt was referee Simon Hooper’s failure to punish Spurs for a succession of fouls as well as that two-goal deficit.

What followed was a devastating show of power from City, who came out after the break and simply refused to be denied as Spurs were unable to cope with their attacking variety, with Mahrez the destroyer-in-chief.

Mahrez was magnificent, scoring two goals and being involved in the others and he continues his rich vein of form.

City have also uncovered another gem in 18-year-old Rico Lewis, who was heavily involved before and after the double strike from Spurs that made Etihad Stadium such an anxious place during the interval.

History tells us that City, as they were in that decisive title victory against Aston Villa on the final day of last season and against Crystal Palace here earlier this season, can never be counted out at two goals down and Alvarez’s strike so early in the second half had a galvanizing effect on the champions and a demoralizing impact on Spurs, who collapsed to another damaging defeat.

More to follow.

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Manchester City

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 31Ederson
  • 82LewisSubstituted forWalkersat 83′minutes
  • 5Stones
  • 25Akanji
  • 6Ake
  • 16Rodri
  • 8GundoganSubstituted forBernard Silvaat 81′minutes
  • 26MahrezBooked at 21mins
  • 19Álvarez
  • 10Grealish
  • 9HaalandSubstituted forRuben Diasat 90′minutes


  • 2Walkers
  • 3Ruben Dias
  • 4Phillips
  • 7I cancel
  • 14Laporte
  • 17DeBruyne
  • 18Ortega
  • 20Bernard Silva
  • 47Foden


Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 1Lloris
  • 17RomeroBooked at 23mins
  • 15Dier
  • 33DaviesSubstituted forLengletat 78′minutes
  • 12Emerson RoyalSubstituted forRichardsonat 78′minutes
  • 5HojbjergBooked at 31mins
  • 30BentancurSubstituted forBissoumaat 75′minutes
  • 14PerisicSubstituted forR Sessegnonat 69′minutes
  • 21Kulusevski
  • 7Son Heung-min
  • 10kane


  • 2Doherty
  • 6D Sanchez
  • 9Richardson
  • 19R Sessegnon
  • 20Forster
  • 25Tanganga
  • 29Sarr
  • 34Lenglet
  • 38Bissouma

Simon Hooper


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