Chelsea 4; Manchester City 4
After weeks of Premier League football in which video assistant refereeing (VAR) has been the central focus of football games, football fans were treated to a thrilling game in which football was finally the main talking point.
Manchester City came into the game at Stamford Bridge sitting on top of the Premier League table, having just run out 6-1 winners at home to Bournemouth in the previous week.
Chelsea still languished just under the midtable mark despite having run out 4-1 winners against Spurs on Monday. The away side managed to take the lead through Erling Halland's penalty in the 25th minute after the Norwegian striker was deemed by referee Anthony Taylor to have been pulled to the ground in the penalty area.
The home side would respond quickly, with Chelsea's captain Thiago Silva brilliantly scoring a header at the near post from a corner to even up the hotly contested game. Chelsea carried the momentum of their equaliser to take the lead in the 37th minute after Reece James's cross to the back post found former Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling to give Chelsea the surprise lead against the reigning champions.
In what was a common theme throughout, the side ahead in the game could not hold onto the lead for very long as Mario Akanji rose highest in the Chelsea box to head home a deadly finish just before the break to even up the game at 2-2.
It was early in the second half when Julian Alvarez fired a fast cross across the box for the outstretched Erling Haaland to score his 13th Premier League goal of the season and put City 3-2 up away from home. Nicholas Jackson would find the equaliser, scoring a rebound in the 67th minute, his fourth goal in his last two games.
A dramatic finish would first see Manchester City midfielder Rodri's 25-yard shot deflect off Chelsea defender Thiago Silva and into the Chelsea goal in the 86th minute. There were jubilant scenes of celebration as City believed they had snatched a late winner at Stamford Bridge. The tide changed one last time in stoppage time at the end of the game, as Chelsea striker Broja was brought down by Ruben Dias in the box to give Chelsea a chance to level the game. Cole Palmer, who joined Chelsea from Manchester City in a 50 million-pound move this summer, stepped up and dispatched the penalty confidently to give Chelsea a deserved point in their thriller with the reigning champions.
The draw leaves Manchester City one point ahead at the top of the Premier League table, in front of Liverpool and Arsenal. Chelsea moved up to 10th in the table.
The manager's reactions
Mauricio Pochettino described the game as “amazing” in his post-match interview.
“It was amazing, that is why the Premier League is the most wonderful league in the world. That is why everyone wants to be involved.”
“Playing against Manchester City, who are the best team in the world, and Chelsea were brave.”
Pochettino on Cole Palmers scoring a penalty in the last minute.
“It shows his character; he is a player who arrived at the last moment from City, and he is showing great character and performance.”
While Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola believed a draw was a “fair” result.
“It was a good advert for the Premier League; both teams wanted to win, they started better, and they have good players and already have a fantastic team.”
“We know they (Chelsea) play well against top sides”.
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