Manchester City vs Liverpool, result, Mahrez miss, reaction, goals, video, title race

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Manchester City and Liverpool played out a compelling 2-2 draw in their Premier League summit meeting that leaves the title race too close to call.

Goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Gabriel Jesus either side of a Diogo Jota strike put leaders City 2-1 up at half-time but Sadio Mane levelled seconds after the restart to change the tone of the match.

Jurgen Klopp’s visitors, who had been on a 10-match winning run in the league, threatened to cut through again in the early minutes of the second half before City recovered their composure.

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MATCH CENTER: Manchester City vs Liverpool at Etihad Stadium

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But neither side could find a winner, leaving Pep Guardiola’s defending champions just a point ahead of Liverpool with seven games to go.

Guardiola said his side had no margin for error in the run-in. “Seven games left, we have to win all of them or it will be over,” he told Sky Sports. “We are going to play for that.” He added: “We performed really well and I’m so incredibly proud of my team. But we knew before the game win, lose or draw it (title race) was not over. ”

Guardiola did though admit he feels it was a missed opportunity for City.

“It was a good game. I will have to review the game but I have a feeling we missed an opportunity. A feeling that we left them alive, ”he said.

“Heads up, I said to the team after the game, I do not want one second of sadness. It was a good game for our fans, Liverpool fans, fans in the UK and around the world. We dignified the Premier League.

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“We created a lot against them, except for maybe the last final action.”

Klopp compared the contest in Manchester to a bout between two prize fighters.

“I think we can describe it as a boxing fight, both arms down for a second and you get a massive knock,” he said.

“I liked a lot of things. I thought we were closer than ever. What a game. Wild. ”

Billed as one of the biggest matches in Premier League history – between two of the finest sides English football has seen – the contest at a crackling Etihad lived up to the hype.

After a cagey opening, the game burst into life.

Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson Becker raced off his line to deny Raheem Sterling, who was set up by Jesus as the home side attacked in earnest for the first time.

But the Brazil international was powerless to prevent De Bruyne’s wickedly deflected opening goal in the fifth minute after he was fed by a quick free-kick.

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The Belgium midfielder skipped past Fabinho and fired in a shot that hit defender Joel Matip and went in off the far post.

A steward had to remove a blue flare from the pitch as home fans celebrated and the momentum was all with City, chasing a fourth league title in five years.

But their wild celebrations were cut short just eight minutes later when Jota scored his 15th Premier League goal of the season.

Andy Robertson crossed to the far post where fellow full-back Trent Alexander-Arnold cut the ball to the Portugal forward, who made no mistake.

Suddenly the Liverpool fans in one corner of the packed ground were in full voice.

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Midway through the first half, City goalkeeper Ederson almost paid for an astonishing lapse in concentration, allowing a tame back pass to dribble within centimeters of crossing the line, with Jota sliding in.

City were shading possession and had the better of the openings but Liverpool posed a constant threat down the right through Alexander-Arnold and Mohamed Salah.

The home side were back in front less than 10 minutes before half time when Joao Cancelo picked out the deep run of Jesus, who lifted the ball over Alisson from the edge of the six-yard box.

City rued missed opportunities.  (Photo by Michael Regan / Getty Images)
City rued missed opportunities. (Photo by Michael Regan / Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

Liverpool were level again within seconds of the restart, before many fans had even re-taken their seats.

Salah picked out fellow forward Mane, who raced onto the ball through the middle and beat Ederson to celebrate his 30th birthday in style.

Guardiola’s men, who had the luxury of a 14-point lead over Liverpool in January, were rattled and Jota forced the City ‘keeper into action shortly afterwards.

The home side thought they had re-taken the lead in the 63rd minute but Sterling’s goal was ruled out for offside by VAR.

The two managers swapped attacking substitutions and it almost paid dividends for City when Riyad Mahrez had a glorious chance to win the match in the dying seconds but he lifted his shot over the bar.

Guardiola and Klopp, who shared a warm hug at the final whistle, will pit their wits against each other again in next week’s FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.

HAMMER BLOW TO TOP-FOUR HOPES

Elsewhere, West Ham’s hopes of finishing in the Premier League’s top four suffered a major blow in a 2-0 defeat at Brentford.

Brentford struck in the 48th minute when Ivan Toney’s flick reached Bryan Mbuemo for a thunderous low finish.

Mbuemo returned the favor with an assist for Toney as the striker headed home in the 64th minute.

David Moyes’ sixth-placed side are now six points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, who have played a game less than their London rivals.

Brentford’s Christian Eriksen and teammates applaud supporters. (Photo by Ben Stansall / AFP)Source: AFP

At the other end of the table, Norwich kept alive their faint hopes of beating the drop with a 2-0 win against fellow strugglers Burnley at Carrow Road.

Dean Smith’s side took the lead in the ninth minute when a corner was only cleared to Pierre Lees-Melou on the edge of the area and his fierce drive deflected in off Josh Brownhill.

Teemu Pukki put the result beyond doubt with a lethal finish Mathias Normann’s 86th-minute pass.

Bottom-of-the-table Norwich are seven points from safety with seven games remaining.

It was a hammer blow for Burnley after their midweek win against relegation rivals Everton had renewed their hopes of staying up.

Third-bottom Burnley are four points adrift of fourth-bottom Everton, with both teams having eight matches to play.

Leicester beat Crystal Palace 2-1 at the King Power Stadium as Ademola Lookman bagged his first goal since February.

Latching onto Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s pass, Lookman cut inside Joachim Andersen and fired past Vicente Guaita in the 39th minute.

Dewsbury-Hall went from provider to scorer on the stroke of half-time, holding off Cheikhou Kouyate to net after Marc Guehi’s mistake allowed Patson Daka to tee up the midfielder.

Wilfried Zaha got one back for Palace in bizarre fashion in the 66th minute. After Youri Tielemans conceded a penalty with a foul on Jordan Ayew, Zaha’s initial spot-kick was saved by Kasper Schmeichel.

However, Leicester’s Caglar Soyuncu had encroached and when Zaha’s retaken penalty was saved again by Schmeichel, the Ivorian was on hand to head in the rebound.

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