By Rhonda Richards | In Match Reports - Home Games
Manchester City suffered their first home defeat of the season as Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea secured a 1-0 win at the Etihad, Branislav Ivanovic’s arrowed half-volley enough to hand the Blues the three points.
The win moves Mourinho’s men level on points with Manuel Pellegrini’s side and just two points behind league leaders Arsenal, and in truth they could have won by a bigger margin.
City went into the game having scored in their last 61 home games and averaging four goals a game at the Etihad this term, but they were second best for the majority of the game. The hosts started brighter, Alvero Negredo curling over early doors and Yaya Toure inches away from meeting Aleksandar Kolarov’s dangerous ball in.
David Silva also went close, meeting Toure’s pass and firing wide from six yards out, whilst Edin Dzeko couldn’t get enough bend on the ball having worked a yard of space on the edge of Chelsea’s box.
However, Chelsea got themselves going and Ramires should have put his side in front as the visitors hit City on the break, the Brazilian’s weak shot instead comfortably parried away by Joe Hart.
However, he had a hand in what turned out to be the winning goal as his shot was blocked, and Ivanovic was there to hit the loose ball first time through a crowd of players and into the back of the net to make it 1-0.
With their noses in front, Chelsea were in a prime position to absorb the pressure and hit City on the break, with Eden Hazard leading proceedings, and soon after the goal he saw a well struck effort saved by Hart. He also coasted through the City defence and laid it off to Samuel Eto’o whose shot rebounded off the crossbar.
If the home faithful hoped for a resurgence in the second half, they got much of the same. Toure did go close minutes after the re-start, his shot floating just wide, whilst Nemanja Matic’s 30 yard drive crashed off the woodwork.
The City goal-frame was being peppered, Gary Cahill – impressive throughout – seeing a header of his own rebound off the post, whilst Stevan Jovetic’s late shot was tipped over superbly by Petr Cech, and that was that.
Chelsea return to West London having ended City’s impressive unbeaten run, Mourinho once again the architect of a big-game win to put his side in among the title challengers.
Man City: Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany, Nastasic, Kolarov, Navas, Demichelis, Toure, Silva, Dzeko, Negredo
Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Azpilicueta, Luiz, Ramires, Hazard, Matic, Willian, Eto’o