Table of Contents
Bringing it home
In a game touted as a tactical chess match between Pep Guardiola and Chris Wilder, it was a former Sheffield man who made the difference.
Kyle Walker was born in Sheffield, played his entire youth career with the Blades, and made his first two senior appearances for the side between 2008 and 09.
His first-half strike was all City would need to see off his childhood club and secure three points.
From the opening kickoff City was on the attack and Sheffield keeper Aaron Ramsdale was thrown into the action.
In the 8th minute Joao Cancelo floated a nice ball in for Ferran Torres but his header was well saved.
This would be the first of many big saves the Blades keeper would have to make throughout the match.
Some good defending from John Egan moments later stopped a lively run from Raheem Sterling.
An ensuing corner was met well by Aymeric Laporte who’s effort went wide.
Later in the half, a thundering effort from Rodri was saved by Ramsdale before also saving a toe-poked effort from Torres.
In the 28th minute, Kevin De Bruyne played a square ball to Walker at the top of the area.
Walker ran onto it and thundered home a shot into the bottom corner, just beyond the fingertips of Ramsdale for the opening goal.
Before the end of the half, Sander Berge sent a nice cross that was met by Rhian Brewster whose effort glanced just wide.
In the second half chances were few and far between.
De Bruyne had an effort go wide early on.
A Riyad Mahrez free-kick was turned aside by Ramsdale.
Some good defending by Ruben Dias helped keep United off the scoresheet.
First, he turned away an inviting Chris Bashman cross.
Then his toe deflection took some steam off a Berge effort shortly after.
The Blades’ best scoring chance came in the 70th minute.
Berge skipped past Cancelo on the right, cutting the ball back to substitute John Lundstram.
However, his strike went over the bar.
Man of the Match
He rarely gets the spotlight but Rodri was as solid as ever in the City midfield today.
The Spaniard helped City win possession at critical times contributing to a second successive clean sheet for the Blues.
His challenges, running and interceptions killed any kind of momentum Chris Wilder’s men were trying to muster.
He was instrumental in keeping City in control of this match.
Sheffield boss Chris Wilder said: “We didn’t do enough with the football to really put them on the back foot and try and affect the result.”
On the other side, Guardiola said: “In the first half, we played really well, we created a lot of chances. We are struggling already to score goals, one day we will unblock this situation.”
On a roll
Since their dismal 5-2 defeat to Leicester City, the Blues have gone seven matches across all competitions without a loss.
They’ve improved defensively in those seven games, only conceding three times.
After losing three straight on the road between March and July, City is unbeaten in their last six games away from home in the Premier League.
Chris Wilder will have to wait another week to get his 100th win as Sheffield United manager.
His team is winless in their last 11 matches across all competitions.
This is the worst start to a season for Sheffield since they began the 1975/76 season with only a single point from their first seven matches.
What it means
This win moves City up to 8th place in the standings for now with 11 points.
The Blades remain in relegation danger with just one point in 18th place.
Next up for the citizens in the Premier League is their arch rivals Liverpool who unseeded the Blues as champions last season. (JSL)
That match goes next Sunday, November 3 at 4:30 from Etihad stadium. (JSL)