A dominant Manchester City extended their winning streak to 16 across all competitions. A penalty from Rodri and a brace from Ilkay Gundogan helped Pep Guardiola’s men secure an emphatic 3-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.
The home side took control of the game right from the first whistle, wasting no time in exerting their dominance over the visitors at both ends of the pitch. Manchester City deservedly took the lead in the 23rd minute after Rodri converted a penalty.
Despite going into the half-time break just a single goal to the good, Manchester City were comfortably the better side. They doubled their advantage through Gundogan in the 50th minute as Spurs struggled to pose an attacking threat.
The win was virtually secured in the 66th minute as Gundogan grabbed his second and Manchester City’s third after latching on to Ederson’s clearance. The German slotted home in clinical fashion to keep his red-hot scoring run going.
As the final whistle blew, Manchester City extended their lead over second-placed Leicester City to seven points with a game in hand. On the other hand, Spurs’ stuttering run of results sees them in eighth place in the Premier League table and in danger of being overtaken by those around them.
And so, in a preview of the Carabao Cup final that these two teams are set to contest in April, here are the hits and flops from Manchester City’s comfortable 3-0 win over Spurs.
#1 Hit: Ilkay Gundogan
The Premier League Player of the Month for January made a strong claim for another win this month, repeating his heroics against Liverpool with another brace and winning a penalty for good measure.
The German midfielder has admirably deputized for the injured Kevin De Bruyne over the past few weeks. Some might argue that Gundogan has outshone the Belgian, as he bagged his ninth goal in as many league games in 2021.
Gundogan has almost perfected the art of making the late run into the box - a quality that he displayed as he won a penalty in the first half after Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg crudely ended a trademark surge into the box.
He then got himself on the scoresheet five minutes into the second half, finishing off a neat Manchester City passing move before doubling his tally in the 66th minute.
Having beautifully brought down Ederson’s monstrous punt upfield, Gundogan showed great strength and skill to beat a couple of defenders and slot an unerring finish into the bottom corner.
Worryingly for Manchester City, the German seemed to pick up an injury that forced him to go off shortly after scoring his second goal. Pep Guardiola will be hoping that it is not a serious one.
#2 Flop: Hugo Lloris
Coming into the game with 99 Premier League clean sheets to his name, Lloris might not have expected the landmark 100th to come against his in-form opponents. However, he would still be disappointed with the manner in which the goals went in.
Despite guessing the right way and getting a hand to Rodri’s first-half penalty, the Spurs keeper was unable to keep it out and looked visibly frustrated with his effort.
His attempt to keep out Gundogan’s first goal would have left him even more disappointed. Lloris seemed confused about saving with his arms or legs, ultimately falling over in a tangle of limbs as the shot rolled past him.
Even though Lloris had no chance with Manchester City’s third goal, the World Cup winner would have expected much better from himself in an encounter of this magnitude.