10-man Manchester City snatch incredible late win vs Fulham

Manchester City snatched an incredible victory at home against Fulham as they played with 10 men for over an hour but Erling Haaland’s stoppage time penalty kick put them top of the table.

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Julian Alvarez put City 1-0 up but Joao Cancelo was then sent off and gave a penalty kick away for bringing down Harry Wilson when he was clean through on goal.

Andres Pereira scored the penalty to make it 1-1 and it looked like City would drop points at home for the first time this season as substitute Haaland had a header disallowed by VAR for being offside. Then Kevin de Bruyne was fouled in the 93rd minute and Haaland squeezed home the spot kick to send the Etihad, and particularly Pep Guardiola, wild.

With the win City move top of the table on 32 points, one point ahead of Arsenal who plays tomorrow. Fulham Remain on 19 points.

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What we learned from Manchester City vs Fulham

Julian Alvarez is an incredible back-up striker: To have a player of Alvarez’s quality to call on when Erling Haaland isn’t fully fit is incredible. The Argentine striker showed his class with a lovely run in-behind and he hammered home to give City an early lead. It was tough for him the rest of the game as City were soon reduced to 10 men but Alvarez is top class and he will be to Haaland what Gabriel Jesus was to Sergio Aguero. Whenever he’s been called upon this season he’s looked ready and he has already scored six goals in a City shirt.

Title race is open: Even though they fought back to win, City’s defensive injuries have just caused a bit of confusion and that has allowed them to stay within touching distance early in the season. A few big mistakes like Cancelo’s in this game, and being caught out at Liverpool, proves that if you can stay in the game against City they will give you an opportunity. Going forward they look unstoppable at times, even with 10 men, but there are enough mistakes in this side to suggest that Arsenal will push them all the way for the title this season.

Fulham fail to make most of opportunity: After making it 1-1 Fulham had a lot of the ball to see out the first half but they sprayed it around at the back. All that did was allow City to have a breather and regroup. Fulham were happy to play for the draw but there was an opportunity to grab a marquee win. They weren’t brave enough on the ball and City looked like they had the extra man in the second half. Fulham were tired and that is what led to the mistake from Antonee Robinson for the penalty.

Erling Haaland on his late penalty kick winner

“One of the most nervous moments in my life. Fantastic! Penalty in the last minute, of course I am nervous, like anybody else would be. Anyway, amazing feeling. I love it [these kind of occasions] I have been one week injured now and it is amazing to be back and three important points. It was tough not to play because I want to play every game. It is difficult. In the end we need three points and that is what we got. I am so tired and so happy, you have no idea.” – Erling Haaland to Sky Sports

Tactical focus

City dominated possession, even when they went down to 10 men, and Fulham sat back and soaked up pressure. At the other end of the pitch the Cottagers had chances when they played long and more direct but City controlled the game whenever it was played into midfield. The way they snap into tackles to win the ball back is quite remarkable.

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Stars of the show

Issa Diop: Barely put a foot wrong at the back for Fulham and he’s settled in so well.

Kevin de Bruyne: Won the penalty kick which led to the winner and never stopped running. Supreme quality whenever he got on the ball.

Ilkay Gundogan: Amazing assist for the opener and he dictated the tempo of the game even though City were down a man.

What’s next?

City host Chelsea in the League Cup on Wednesday before hosting Brentford next Saturday, Nov. 12. Fulham host Manchester United on Sunday, Nov. 13.

How to watch Manchester City vs Fulham live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 11am ET, Saturday
TV Channel: USA Network 
Online: Stream via NBCSports.com

Key storylines

Manchester City are clicking through the gears ominously and even with some injuries cropping up the squad they have assembled is so deep. Two points off Premier League leaders Arsenal is nothing for Guardiola’s men to worry about and they will feel very confident heading into the second half of the campaign. So will Fulham, as Silva has done a remarkable job and they are almost halfway to the magic 40 point mark. That is an incredible achievement for the newly-promoted side and there is a newfound resilience about this team, while their attacking talents are also firing on all cylinders.

In-form players to keep an eye on

Kevin de Bruyne continues to dazzle, as his spectacular free kick at Leicester last week proved, while Rodri is dominating games in midfield and Ruben Dias and Joao Cancelo have been imperious defensively. Fulham’s Mitrovic is causing all kinds of problems, while Joao Palhinha and Andres Pereira have been excellent additions in midfield and so have experienced duo Wilian and Bernd Leno.

Manchester City team news, injuries, lineup

The big question mark was around Erling Haaland who has missed City’s last two games with a small ankle issue as he has now recovered from illness, but he’s only fit enough to start on the bench. Kyle Walker and Kalvin Phillips remain out but both are working hard to return before the World Cup break. Manuel Akanji has recovered from a knock to start, while Julian Alvarez continues up top with Haaland not fit enough to start.

Fulham team news, injuries, lineup

Bobby DeCordova Reid is suspended after picking up five yellow cards, while Layvin Kurzawa and Manor Solomon remain out. Kenny Tete comes in for DeCordova Reid at right back. Fulham suffered a big injury blow in midweek as winger Neeskens Kebano ruptured his Achilles in training and is set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Harry Wilson comes in for him, while the big news is Aleksandar Mitrovic is out so Carlos Vinicius starts.

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10-man Manchester City snatch incredible late win vs Fulham originally appeared on NBCSports.com