Premier League 2 16/17 Leigh Sports Village Att: Monday, January 9, 2017 7:00:00 PM
- Oliver Francis
- Boadu Patching
- Unused subs
- Haug, Latibeaudiere, Smith
Read what happened as Simon Davies' side travelled to Leigh Sports Village to face their Manchester United counterparts...
Manchester City maintained pressure on Everton at the top of the Premier League 2 table with a 3-1 victory over 10-man Manchester United at Leigh Sports Village.
Goals from Brahim Diaz, Isaac Buckley-Ricketts and Paolo Fernandes were enough to see Simon Davies’ side past their local rivals in a match they dominated.
A decisive moment came in the 14th minute as United defender Regan Poole lunged into a dangerous tackle on Paolo Fernandes and was shown a red card.
City dominated possession from that point and when Brahim Diaz beat several United defenders as he cut in from the right wing, his curling effort looked set to give Simon Davies’ side the lead. The Spaniard’s shot actually hit the outside of the post but it was a sign of things to come.
United goalkeeper Joel Pereira denied both Diaz and Jadon Sancho as the half wore on but much of City’s first half pressure broke down on the edge of the box.
Diaz’s goal finally came just minutes into the second half as he arrived on to a cutback and fired his left footed effort inside the far post.
There was a sting in the tail for City though as United midfielder Sean Goss slid home an equaliser after an incisive break from the hosts.
City were clearly angered by conceding and their response was swift. Diaz was denied by Pereira in a one-on-one situation but Isaac Buckley-Ricketts collected the rebound and kept his cool to shoot past the covering defenders.
Paolo Fernandes sealed the three points for City in the seventy first minute with a low drive from 15 yards that proved too fast for the reactions of Pereira.
What it means...
The victory means Manchester City are once again two points behind Premier League 2 leaders Everton with 27 points after 13 matches.
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United had perhaps been the more fluent of the two sides in the early stages but when Regan Poole’s overzealous tackle on Fernandes saw him sent for an early shower, it became obvious City would have most of the possession.
The space left behind proved crucial for Diaz, Sancho and Fernandes as they looked to get around their opponents.
Man of the match...
Brahim Diaz – The 17-year-old has played in several different positions so far this season but he appears to be enjoying his current right wing role.
Whether coming from deep and jinking around opponents or creating chances in tiny spaces, the Spaniard was City’s biggest threat throughout the night.
How they lined up...
Angus Gunn made his second appearance of the Premier League 2 season in goal.