- Gabriel Jesus started, scored the opener
- Gylfi Sigurdsson stunned the Etihad with 10 mins left
- Jesus scored in injury time to secure win
Manchester City dominated possession, pummeling Swansea in the opening 45 minutes, but only managed one early goal and gave it away as Gylfi Sigurdsson drew level with 10 minutes to go. It appeared City had squandered another three points, but there was Gabriel Jesus to win it in added time.
The first half was all Manchester City. Jesus, starting in place of Sergio Aguero for the second straight match, had the game’s best early chance as he possessed the ball on the penalty spot in the eighth minute, but was unable to get a shot off under heavy pressure from Federico Fernandez.
He would make up for the early slip-up by atoning just moments later with the opening goal. David Silva slipped his way into the box along the end line and delivered a ball into the front of net. The ball bounced off the feet of Raheem Sterling as he was bundled over, but Jesus pounced to pummel the ball assuredly past Lukasz Fabianski for the 11th minute strike.
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City continued to pound the Swansea area, and Yaya Toure forced an athletic save from Fabianski in the 21st minute with a powerful free-kick destined for the top-left corner before the Swansea goalkeeper lept high to punch it away. Sterling nearly fed Jesus a second on 26 minutes, but as the Brazilian came barreling in to meet the low cross, he couldn’t get a touch again marked by Fernandez.
There was a controversial moment just before halftime as Sterling burst into the box and was challenged by Fabianski who came off his line to dispossess Sterling. The English international went to ground, and was booked by referee Mike Dean for diving, but replays clearly showed Fabianski catching Sterling’s leg. While it may not have been enough to award City a penalty, it was certainly enough to rule out a dive.
In the second half, Swansea saw more of the ball in the opening moments, with Sigurdsson nearly bringing the visitors shockingly level with an exquisite free-kick, but Willy Caballero was there to produce a top save similar to Fabianski’s on Toure in the first half. Moments later, Leroy Sane almost scored a stunner, striking the post with a shot from an impossibly tight angle, with Fabianski’s face showing surprise at a shot produced from that position as opposed to a cross.
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The Swans were unable to capitalize on their bright spell, and the game snoozed to a crawl as the hosts possessed the lion’s share of the ball yet again, looking to see the game out. That left Swansea to snag the initiative again, and they took advantage. Sigurdsson grabbed the ball above the top of the box, and surprised everyone by shooting low to the right corner. His shot seemed to catch Caballero off guard as well, as the Manchester City goalkeeper dove late, unable to stop the equalizer with 10 minutes remaining.
That forced Guardiola to bring on Sergio Aguero, and City pushed hard for a late winner, but they were uninspiring and unable to find a way through Swansea’s packed midfield until the winning moment two minutes into injury time. David Sliva delivered a perfect ball into the box, and Jesus rose high to head the chance. The initial effort was saved by Fabianski, but the ball trickled free and Jesus was there to pounce on the winning goal.
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The win sees Manchester City above both Arsenal and Liverpool into third with the Gunners and Reds both falling on Saturday. Swansea remains above the relegation zone despite the loss, but their margin of error is slimmed thanks to Hull City and Sunderland both winning below them.