Manchester City drew with Newcastle United 2-2 in today’s early kick-off Premier League match at St. James’ Park, leaving them trailing league leaders Liverpool by 8 points. Pep Guardiola’s men looked strangely flat throughout the game despite bossing possession and having far more chances than the Magpies, but in the end Steve Bruce’s side fought for every ball and held firm.
Raheem Sterling opened the scoring for City after 22 minutes, capitalising on a bit of a lucky bounce to finish off a move started by David Silva, but just three minutes later, Newcastle were level when Jetro Willems smashed Miguel Almiron’s cutback into the corner of the net.
City regained the lead through a Kevin De Bruyne piledriver with 82 minutes gone, but with two minutes of normal time remaining, Jonjo Shelvey smashed a right-footed shot into the net following a cleverly laid-off free-kick to equalise. Sterling then could’ve won the game very late on, but his weak shot hit was too close to Magpies keeper Martin Dubravka.
Here are the top three performers from today’s draw between Newcastle United and Manchester City.
#3 Federico Fernandez
All of Newcastle’s defenders were fantastic today, as Steve Bruce set his team up with a 5-man back-line in order to counter Manchester City’s potent attacking firepower. With that in mind, goalscorer Jetro Willems would’ve been a fair pick for this article, but I felt that central defender Federico Fernandez was the Mapgies’ most outstanding performer.
The Argentine defender made 2 successful tackles, 10 successful clearances and 4 interceptions, putting in better statistics than any of his teammates, and on more than one occasion he also burst through the City lines from the back and helped to set up some of Newcastle’s counter-attacks.
The Magpies’ defence was put under some immense pressure from one of the toughest sides to face today, and for the most part, they held them off. Fernandez was a massive part of that and deserves tremendous credit for his performance.