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Talking Points: Raheem's right on time again

FABULOUS FINISH: Raheem Sterling curls home his stunning winner against Southampton

FABULOUS FINISH: Raheem Sterling curls home his stunning winner against Southampton

Manchester City made it 19-consecutive victories with a 2-1 win over Southampton on Wednesday.

Goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling sealed the points that re-established our eight-point lead at the top of the Premier League table.

Here, Club journalist Rob Pollard has taken a look back at the game’s major talking points.

1 The late, late show with Raheem Sterling

City’s winner was well worth waiting for.

Six minutes into injury time, the ball fell to Raheem Sterling just outside the area. He took one touch with his left before curling it into the top corner past Fraser Forster with his right.

It was a moment of magic, the kind that creates title-winning momentum.

And it isn’t the first time he’s won crucial points with a late goal this season. He scored an equaliser against Everton with six minutes left, a 96th-minute winner against Bournemouth and a vital goal against Huddersfield on Sunday after 84 minutes.

 

ALL SQUARE: Oriol Romeu draws Southampton level.

Highlights

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Man City v Southampton: Extended highlights

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It’s now 13 goals in 19 games for Sterling this term – a remarkable record for a player primarily operating in wide areas – and he has been directly involved in 12 goals in his last 13 competitive appearances (10 goals, two assists).

“Raheem is a match-winner, I am so happy for him,” Guardiola said afterwards. “He is special, it was an amazing goal. It is more than important, it is beautiful.”

His contribution to City’s record-breaking start to the season should not be underplayed.

2 Killer De Bruyne

It may not have been a vintage performance from Kevin De Bruyne but once again he has contributed key moments that have helped City secure three vital points.

He scored the opener with a free-kick that went in at the near post, before teeing up Sterling’s winner in stoppage time.

Indeed, since his debut in 2015, De Bruyne has had a hand in 51 goals in the competition (17 goals, 34 assists), more than any other midfielder in that time.

Like Sterling, De Bruyne is a consistent match-winner.

3 Ederson's touch of class

It was just a single moment, but it summed up the impact Ederson has had on the team since his arrival in the summer.

 
WATCHING: Pep Guardiola watched on as City compete against Southampton in the Premier League.

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Guardiola on City's 'special moments'

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It came in the second-half when Southampton’s Mario Lemina attempted to play a long ball forward to Shane Long. Before the striker could even think about bringing the ball down, Ederson stepped forward 35-yards from goal and killed it stone-dead with his left foot before nonchalantly playing it to Kyle Walker to start another City attack. Sheer class.

It’s that kind of calmness that has steadied City’s backline. He’s been a transformative signing.

4 City's incredible season continues

A rundown of some of the statistics so far this season really sum up the season City are having.

They have earned 40 points from 14 Premier League games, that’s the joint-best start at this stage of any season since the introduction of three points for a win. Only Tottenham’s double winners of 1961 have managed the same.

The Blues have scored a remarkable 59 goals in 21 games in all competitions, winning 20 and drawing one.

And they have now won 12 Premier League games on the bounce, two short of equalling Arsenal’s top-flight record of 14.

Media Watch

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Men's Team

Raheem Sterling's key stat

PICK YOUR SPOT: Raheem Sterling unleashes a fearsome strike in injury time.

Raheem Sterling is not getting carried away with the records City are racking up with every passing game, insisting that there is only one statistic that matters.

Winger reaction

Men's Team

Guardiola: Belief behind Sterling's success

DELIGHT: Look how much that late winner meant to the boss!

City manager Pep Guardiola identified a new-found confidence as the key to Raheem Sterling’s scintillating form.

The winger struck a wonderful curling effort in injury time to snatch all three points for the Blues against Southampton, clinching a 19th consecutive win for the Club and his 13th goal of a superb campaign.