Dedryck Boyata had to sit and watch as loan club Bolton were beaten at the Etihad - but plenty of City's other wandering stars were in action for their respective clubs.
Hard on the heels of that crushing derby defeat, Emmanuel Adebayor's Tottenham lost 3-1 to Manchester United - though it could have been so different for the Togolese striker.
With the score still goalless, lively Manu turned his shot into the net - only to have his effort ruled out for an earlier handball.
Later denied by a fine save from David de Gea, it wasn't to be Adebayor's day as Spurs slipped 13 points behind his parent club
It was no quieter a weekend for Sunderland's Wayne Bridge as the Black Cats were pegged back by Newcastle in the final minute of their ill-tempered Tyne-Wear derby.
The former England international was unable to prevent the late equaliser in a 1-1 draw, having come on to shore up the defence with five minutes remaining of a game that saw two team-mates sent off.
Greg Cunningham's Nottingham Forest grabbed what could prove a vital point at Barnsley. The Irishman, who came on in the 87th minute, was denied an unlikely winner in the dying minutes.
Forest are now four points clear of Alex Nimely's 22nd-placed Coventry, whose survival chances were dealt a blow by ten-man Leicester this weekend.
The Liberian-born striker shaved the crossbar with one effort for the Sky Blues, who are three points off safety following the 2-0 defeat.
Abdul Razak enjoyed an hour of action for Brighton while Gai Assulin played eight minutes off the bench as bottom side Doncaster clawed their way back from a goal down to dent the Seagulls' play-off hopes.
John Guidetti’s return from suspension helped Feyenoord back to winning ways - they beat Groningen by a single goal - while Roque Santa Cruz played 36 minutes of Real Betis’ 3-1 loss at high-flying Levante.
Elsewhere in Spain, Vladimir Weiss suffered an uncomfortable 90 minutes for Espanyol as runaway La Liga leaders Real Madrid romped to a 5-0 victory over his side.