In a game where Manchester City should’ve won, they somehow drew against a spirited Burnley side that never gave in.
The first flashpoint came when Sam Vokes made an aerial challenge for the ball with Vincent Kompany from a corner. The Welshman came off worse but was fine to continue.
Both sides had good chances earlier on, and both were cleared with the best clearance coming from Nicolas Otamendi with the Argentine doing his best to thwart a Burnley onslaught.
Danilo broke the deadlock with 22 minutes gone with a blinder of a goal from outside the box. There was simply no saving that!
The visitors looked to build on the goal with chances from Raheem Sterling, with his first effort easily caught by Nick Pope and a one-two between Sterling and Ilkay Gundogan coming to nothing.
Burnley backed up their first-half performance with close chances from Ben Mee a close volley and a header at the near post too!
Manchester City were looking for more goals but just couldn’t find the net with Kevin De Bruyne having a free run and subsequently shooting at goal but Pope saved and Sergio Aguero failed to finish on the rebound.
The last action of the first half came when Pope saved from Aguero.
Somehow, Pep Guardiola’s side just couldn’t score again.
Early on, a one-two between Sterling and Aguero with the former having a go at goal at the near post failed to convert somehow. Had City become allergic to scoring?
Though on second glance, there was a deflection for Matthew Lowton who forced a corner, so pats to him.
The league leaders were denied a second yet again when Lowton foiled Gundogan. The Burnley defence was doing its job!
Sterling saw his opportunity at goal stopped (following a short pass from Aguero).
Danilo looked to recreate his first half goal with an great opportunity from way out, but his effort glided just over, neary catching out Pope in the process!
Sean Dyche’s side could’ve equalised twice with the first chance coming from a freekick but neither Vokes nor Mee could make a connection and the second coming from Aaron Lennon, but his shot was brilliantly saved by Ederson Moraes. Save of the season?
The miss of the season came from Sterling who somehow missed from close range following a cross from Kyle Walker. How on earth did he miss from there?! You’d bet your house on him to score from there! At that point, I was wondering whether Manchester City would be punished for failing to convert chances.
— Half Time Cuppa (@Halftime_Cuppa) February 3, 2018
Low and behold, they were. A strike from close range by Johan Berg Gudmundsson proved to be the sting in the tail as Guardiola’s side were punished for failing to convert their chances.
I don’t know how I’d put that to be honest. “Burnley win 1-1”? “Manchester City lose 1-1”? Whatever the headline, City ultimately paid the price for failing to convert chances.
Thoughts on the game
How did Manchester City not win that? How did Raheem Sterling miss from there?! Those are the burning questions.
Aside from that, my appreciation goes out to both Nick Pope, and Ederson Moraes for making this an interesting game with great saves!
Also, special recognition goes out to Burnley who dug deep to rescue a point.
The only downside is that Burnley are now without a win nine and whilst they have no chance of being relegated, there are (or could be) suggestions that they have taken their foot off the gas, but that’s a story for another day.
Manchester City will feel hard done by this “defeat”, but they still have a healthy lead at the top if that serves as a consolation.
Burnley travel to relegation-threatened Swansea City next Saturday (3 pm kick-off), then Manchester City host Leicester City on the same day (5:30 pm kick-off).
Feature image credit: Alan Slater