Rodri strikes late, puts Man City ahead and breaks Sheffield United’s hearts

Rodri’s late winner secured Manchester City a hard-fought 2-1 win at Sheffield United and propelled them to the top of the Premier League.

The City midfielder slammed into the net with a shot from inside the box less than three minutes after Blades substitute Jayden Bogle equalized Erling Haaland’s second-half header with an 85th-minute equaliser.

It was a breathless end to a game City had dominated – Haaland missed a first-half penalty – but Rodri’s strike finally ended the Blades’ brave resistance and sealed absent manager Pep Guardiola’s 200th win in the English top flight.

While City assistant coach Juanma Lillo was in charge of the visitors’ dugout while Guardiola was recovering from back surgery at Barcelona, ​​it was 12 minutes before his side created their first chance when Haaland headed straight for Blades goalkeeper Wes Foderingham.

The home side, who had to replace Ben Osborn with summer signing Yasser Larouci in the 17th minute, remained resolute as City took possession of the ball and patiently looked for an opportunity.

In the 26th minute, Foderingham saved the visitors again by deflecting Alvarez’s shot for a corner.

City had a chance to take the lead in the first half when Alvarez’s cross caught John Egan in the arm as the Blades captain slipped in to block and referee Jarred Gillett pointed straight at the penalty spot.

But Haaland failed to convert as his low left-footed penalty struck Foderingham’s left post.

Blades defender George Baldock was booked before half-time for his vehement attack on Jack Grealish and the home fans gave their side a standing ovation at half-time as the score was 0-0.

Shortly after the restart, Lillo entered the technical zone for the first time and saw Haaland just inches wide of Kyle Walker’s cross.

City’s approach game was now more urgent. Rodri flicked a low shot wide, Foderingham saved the Blades again by deflecting Haaland’s shot to the corner and Alvarez fired Grealish’s shot just wide.

Then Walker shot over the line before City made the breakthrough in the 63rd minute.

Grealish was flanked on the left edge of the box by Baldock but made room to deflect the ball to the far post and Haaland scored his third league goal of the season with a powerful header.

The Blades reacted when substitute Oli McBurnie headed wide from a corner and at the other end Foderingham saved Mateo Kovacic’s free-kick.

Bramall Lane erupted in the 85th minute when substitute Bogle fired a shot into the far post to level his side after an earlier mistake by the former Blade Walker.

But before the 31,336 spectators could catch their breath, Walker made amends by passing Larouci wide and whose cross was sent home by Rodri after Phil Foden mishandled.

The Blades almost equalized again when Anel Ahmedhodzic narrowly parried a McBurnie cross, but City stood their ground to maintain their 100 percent start.

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