FootballManchester City

City stretch win streak to 18 games

Sky Blues beat Arsenal 1-0

Crazy Eight

Manchester City keeps finding ways to win as they extended their winning run to 18 games with a 1-0 victory over Arsenal.

Raheem Sterling got the lone goal in the second minute as City cruised to another comfortable win.

It’s City’s eighth straight Premier League win against the Gunners.

That’s the most consecutive league losses for Arsenal against one opponent since losing eight straight top-flight matches to Leeds United between 1973 and 1976.

Game Story

It may have been a typical Man City win, but it was anything from a typical Man City start on Sunday.

Two minutes in, and City were already a goal to the goods.

Some excellent work from Riyad Mahrez, who fired a perfectly placed cross to an unmarked Raheem Sterling, who put his header into the top corner.

From that point, City was in command and rarely threatened as they eased back into their possession game.

Mahrez had a chance to double the lead on eight minutes, while Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka had a half-chance on 18 minutes that got blocked.

Some nice blocks from Rob Holding prevented City from doing any more damage in the first half.

Arsenal’s Pepe ended the half, missing a powerful close-range shot.

A strong save from Bernd Leno off Ilkay Gundogan kept the match close in the 57th minute.

Arsenal’s best chance to equalize came in the 78th minute.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang got behind City’s defence, crossing to Saka who lost his footing from 12 yards away, and City cleared.

City almost doubled the advantage two minutes later as Gabriel Jesus rolled a nice ball towards Joao Cancelo, but his curling drive sailed inches wide.

In the end a relatively comfortable win for the Sky Blues.

Man of the Match

You could go with any of City’s defenders in this one, but I’m going to choose Ruben Dias.

When Vincent Kompany left to be a player/manager at Anderlecht, there was a massive void in central defence.

It took a while to fill that void, but it seems Dias could be that missing piece.

The Portuguese centre-back had the most touches today, most passes completed, and most joint dribbles completed.

It’s City’s 11th clean sheet in 13 matches when Dias and John Stones partner up at the back.

Visiting History

I sound like a broken record when I mention it, but Man City tied another record with today’s victory.

With their 11th consecutive win on the road, City equal the record for most road wins by an English top-flight team in all competitions. The previous mark was 11 held by Guardiola’s side between May and November 2017.

It looks like Manchester United isn’t the only team that relishes being the visitors.

Speaking of road success, Raheem Sterling continues to be a thorn in the Gunners side.

With his goal today, he becomes just the third player to score in three consecutive away games against Arsenal in the Premier League.

Nicolas Anelka scored four straight times against Arsenal on their home turf until 2009. Ian Harte scored three consecutive times at Highbury until 2003.

Clean Sweep

We’re used to seeing City keep clean sheets, but it’s rare to see Arsenal in such a goalless drought at home.

It’s the fourth straight time Arsenal’s been shutout at the Emirates against the Sky Blues. That’s the longest the Gunners have ever gone without scoring at home against any single opponent.

City’s 15th Premier League clean sheet is the most by an EPL team after 25 games since Man United (19) and Chelsea (15) in 2008-09.

Dominating

Since losing 2-0 to Tottenham back on November 20, 2020, City’s been dominant.

They’re now unbeaten in their last 25 matches in all competitions, winning 22 times and drawing three.

In that period, they’ve scored 59 times while conceding only seven.

City’s only trailed one-time in all those matches surviving an FA Cup scare to League Two side Cheltenham FC.

Mile Stones

City’s centre-back John Stones reached the 100 mark in terms of Man City appearances, all under manager Pep Guardiola.

He’s only the third English player on the squad to reach the century mark with the Spaniard after Raheem Sterling (156) and Kyle Walker (110).

Managers Words

Following the match, City manager Pep Guardiola said he’s happy his team keeps finding ways to win.

“I am more than pleased to win 1-0. To have a record like this, you have to win like this. You can’t always win, scoring three or four.

“We don’t have time to do anything, just recover and prepare mentally. There are 39 points to play for, and we need the victories to be champions, and we will try in the next games.”

Next Up

City’s attention turns to the Champions League as they travel to Hungary to face German side Borussia Monchengladbach on Wednesday.

The kickoff from Puskas Arena in Budapest is 8 pm.

Their next Premier League affair will be next Saturday against West Ham at the Etihad at 12:30 pm. (JSL).

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