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Manchester City held to draw by Gerrard’s Villa

Champions Saturday’s Premier League match between Manchester City and Aston Villa ended in a 1-1 tie after Erling Haaland scored his 10th goal in six outings.

In the 74th minute, Villa’s Jamaican winger Leon Bailey scored an excellent equaliser after excellent work by Jacob Ramsey, who provided a crisp, low cross that Bailey curled into the top corner with his left foot.

Haaland had given Pep Guardiola’s team the lead five minutes into the second half after connecting with Kevin De Bruyne’s superb deep ball from the right wing.

The Norwegian, who had scored hat-tricks in his previous two outings, sprinted behind the back post and volleyed the ball home with pinpoint accuracy.

De Bruyne then hit the crossbar with a free kick, but Villa held superbly against a barrage of City raids until Bailey scored.

Gerrard, who acknowledged to feeling pressure owing to Villa’s dismal start to the season, substituted Philippe Coutinho, who had the ball in the goal before the offside flag was hoisted.

This goal was not subject to VAR review, however, replays revealed Coutinho may have been in an onside position, and Gerrard deemed it a “valid” goal.

The result puts City in the second position with 14 points, one point behind leaders Arsenal, who will play Manchester United on Sunday at Old Trafford.

Villa is 17th with four points from their first six games, but Gerrard claimed that his realistic approach has been rewarded.

“Sometimes you’ve got to put more legs in the team, sacrifice certain technical levels, you have to take some space away and people in the team who can gain the ball and move forward with speed,” said Gerrard.

“Very proud – the players have come together today. They put an incredible amount of effort into the game and followed instructions. City are always going to have moments and we had to ride our luck, this is what we wanted out of the game and this is the game plan we gave them,” he added.

 

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