Manchester Metropolis prolonged their unbeaten run to 14 matches in all competitions with a hard-fought win over struggling Brighton.
Phil Foden grabbed the one purpose simply earlier than half-time when he collected Kevin de Bruyne’s cross, created area and fired into the underside nook.
The hosts had possibilities to increase the lead, Riyad Mahrez taking pictures simply broad, Ilkay Gundogan seeing an effort saved by Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez and Bernardo Silva hitting the crossbar. Most culpably, Raheem Sterling despatched an injury-time penalty over the bar after Sanchez had fouled De Bruyne.
Alexis Mac Allister had maybe the Seagulls’ finest likelihood to equalise however shot excessive.
Metropolis’s fourth straight win within the league strikes them as much as third, though they may drop again to fourth if Tottenham win at dwelling towards Fulham within the late recreation on Wednesday.
Brighton, in the meantime, have not received in 9 league matches and will discover themselves within the backside three if 18th-placed Fulham come out on high at Spurs.
From the underside half to title challengers
Metropolis have not misplaced since 21 November after they had been crushed 2-0 at Tottenham, a end result that left Pep Guardiola’s aspect eleventh within the Premier League.
Nevertheless, their type has been very good since then with 11 wins and three attracts in all competitions, and solely three targets conceded in that interval. Throughout league and cups, they’ve now received seven in a row.
What makes these statistics much more spectacular is that Guardiola has repeatedly been with out key gamers due to coronavirus, with goalkeeper Ederson, defender Kyle Walker and forwards Gabriel Jesus and Ferran Torres amongst these to have missed current matches.
Towards Brighton, Metropolis had been lacking striker Sergio Aguero, the Argentine self-isolating following contact with somebody who examined constructive for Covid-19. With Sterling, Jesus and Torres beginning on the bench, De Bruyne operated as a makeshift centre-forward.
And the Belgium worldwide was on the coronary heart of Metropolis’s finest strikes. He had a shot saved by Sanchez from a decent angle then launched Mahrez, who may solely shoot broad.
However simply earlier than half-time De Bruyne grabbed his ninth Premier League help of the season when he slid a cross to Foden and the 20-year-old England midfielder did the remaining, taking three touches to evade the Brighton defenders after which taking pictures previous Sanchez.
Mahrez, Gundogan, Silva, Joao Cancelo and De Bruyne all had efforts contained in the opening 20 minutes of the second half as Metropolis pushed for a second to kill the sport off.
Sterling, who got here on within the 82nd minute as a alternative for Foden, fired a penalty over in stoppage time after Sanchez’s clumsy foul on De Bruyne.
Metropolis, champions in 2017-18 and 2018-19 and runners-up final time, are proper again in competition. They’re now solely 4 factors behind leaders Manchester United with a recreation in hand on their rivals.
Brighton lack leading edge wanted to get some extent
Brighton, with no win within the Premier League since they beat Aston Villa 2-1 on 21 November, might be inspired by their battling efficiency, however lacked the standard up entrance to get some extent.
Graham Potter’s aspect needed to wait 40 minutes for his or her first nook, after which the supply was poor and Metropolis rapidly broke with De Bruyne forcing a high-quality save from Sanchez.
The Seagulls didn’t have a shot on the right track till 10 minutes into the second half and that was no bother for Ederson as Davy Propper’s strike was straight at him.
Percy Tau, making his Premier League debut greater than two years after signing for Brighton, arrange Mac Allister, who shot narrowly over.
Potter introduced on high goalscorer Neal Maupay for Tau for the final 22 minutes, however the Frenchman couldn’t encourage an equaliser.
One other clear sheet for Metropolis – the stats
- Manchester Metropolis have received their previous 4 Premier League video games, as many as they’d of their earlier 11 within the competitors (received 4, drew 5, misplaced two).
- Brighton are with no win in 9 Premier League video games, the longest present run within the competitors (drew 5, misplaced 4).
- No aspect have saved extra Premier League clear sheets this season than Manchester Metropolis (eight), who additionally having the fewest targets conceded (13).
- Metropolis have received all seven of their Premier League conferences with Brighton, by an combination rating of 21-2.
- Metropolis have missed seven penalties within the Premier League because the begin of final season, greater than every other aspect. Three of those have been missed by Raheem Sterling.
- Phil Foden scored his eighth purpose of the season in all competitions, greater than every other Manchester Metropolis participant.
- Metropolis’s Kevin De Bruyne offered his 14th help of the season in all competitions – no Premier League participant has extra.
‘Again to our greatest’ – what they stated
Manchester Metropolis supervisor Pep Guardiola advised BBC Sport: “We knew how robust it might be. Brighton had mentality to play.
“We had a extremely good first half and had possibilities. After we missed a extremely clear likelihood within the second half, they had been higher.
“We have to win these form of video games. It’s a good lesson for us. Each recreation might be like this.
“Phil Foden is 20 years outdated. Take a look at the stats, the quantity of video games, the assists in comparison with the larger stars in soccer. He can play either side, within the center as a false 9. He’s so intelligent in entrance of purpose. That’s the reason he deserves to play.”
Manchester Metropolis match-winner Phil Foden stated: “It undoubtedly looks like we’re again to our greatest. We have taken confidence from the previous couple of outcomes.
“We may have finished higher however general I am very pleased with the group. It is an important end result.
“Brighton defended very well and had gameplan. To get the purpose earlier than half-time was actually vital. It ended up because the profitable purpose so I am delighted.”
Brighton boss Graham Potter advised BBC Sport: “We’re upset to return away with nothing. We met a high group. I am so pleased with the gamers. It’s a must to undergo right here, that is how it’s. We tried to assault.
“You are at all times on the stretch as a result of they’ve unbelievable gamers. They’re so good, they drive you again. Our intention was to be on the entrance foot and play and assault after we may.
“The boys defended nicely after they needed to and left every part on the pitch which is all you may ask.”
On Percy Tau, Potter added: “I believe you bought glimpses. It is a robust recreation for a ahead as a result of it’s important to expend a whole lot of vitality defending which takes away from the standard he has. He is received loads of time and we have to assist him.”
Brighton might be trying to find solely their third league win of the season after they play at Leeds on Saturday, 16 January (15:00 GMT).
This was the second of 4 dwelling matches in a row for Manchester Metropolis and so they host Crystal Palace within the Premier League on Sunday (19:15 GMT).
Brighton & Hove Albion
- 3Rúben Dias
- 17De Bruyne
- 26MahrezSubstituted forGabriel Jesusat 67′minutes
- 20Bernardo Silva
- 47FodenSubstituted forSterlingat 82′minutes
- 9Gabriel Jesus
- 4WebsterBooked at 77mins
- 34VeltmanBooked at 62mins
- 24PröpperSubstituted forMarchat 68′minutes
- 22TauSubstituted forMaupayat 68′minutes
- 11TrossardSubstituted forKhadraat 86′minutes
- 10Mac Allister
Stay Textual content
Match ends, Manchester Metropolis 1, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.
Second Half ends, Manchester Metropolis 1, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.
Foul by Raheem Sterling (Manchester Metropolis).
Solly March (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick on the appropriate wing.
Penalty missed! Unhealthy penalty by Raheem Sterling (Manchester Metropolis) proper footed shot is only a bit too excessive. Raheem Sterling needs to be upset.
Penalty Manchester Metropolis. Kevin De Bruyne attracts a foul within the penalty space.
Penalty conceded by Robert Sánchez (Brighton and Hove Albion) after a foul within the penalty space.
Nook, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by John Stones.
Nook, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Bernardo Silva.
Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Reda Khadra replaces Leandro Trossard.
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester Metropolis) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Foul by Joël Veltman (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Try blocked. Raheem Sterling (Manchester Metropolis) proper footed shot from the left aspect of the field is blocked. Assisted by Kevin De Bruyne.
Substitution, Manchester Metropolis. Raheem Sterling replaces Phil Foden.
Ilkay Gündogan (Manchester Metropolis) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Foul by Solly March (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Joël Veltman tries a by way of ball, however Dan Burn is caught offside.
Try blocked. Neal Maupay (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from outdoors the field is blocked. Assisted by Leandro Trossard.
Adam Webster (Brighton and Hove Albion) is proven the yellow card for a nasty foul.
Bernardo Silva (Manchester Metropolis) wins a free kick within the defensive half.