Rodri-Stunner brings down Sheffield United after late scare for Manchester City | premier league

Kyle Walker has atoned for gifting his former club Sheffield United an 85th equalized by playing a key role in Rodri’s winner three minutes later as Manchester City built on their flawless start in defending their Premier League title.

That leaves City the last top team with a 100 per cent start, but this one wasn’t nearly as easy as beating these opponents in the FA Cup semifinals as Paul Heckingbottom’s newly minted side went full throttle after Erling Haaland’s 63rd goal gaveapprox He even had the audacity to equalize through Jayden Bogle in the first minute before Rodri scored his final key goal.

Anyone expecting a routine City win was proved wrong as Haaland missed another penalty in the first half to give United hope.

This is the first time City have won their first three league games since Pep Guardiola’s first season, but the manager, who is recovering from back surgery at Barcelona, ​​could encourage Walker to facetime to have a quiet conversation after his new captain allowed Bénie Traoré to steal the ball in his own penalty area in front of the United goal.

The danger was only partially averted and Vinícius Souza rushed to tackle, which saw the ball fly to Bogle, the substitute, on City’s right edge of the box. He was given time to control both the ball and himself before flicking it past Ederson – and Oli McBurnie, who was believed not to affect the keeper’s line of sight – into the far corner. Absolute chaos reigns at Bramall Lane as United sense they could clinch an unlikely first point of the season.

Walker hung his head on the ground where he had been the lead for so long, but picked himself up to make a crucial tackle at the other end within three minutes. He stole the ball from Yasser Larouci in the far corner and calmed down before playing a pass back to Phil Foden.

The ball fell back and Rodri, the goalscorer of City’s Champions League final winners in June, slotted the ball into the top corner. It was the brilliant conclusion to a thrilling game that will give both teams a lot of courage in different ways.

For all their clinical play, City have now missed three of their last five penalties, excluding shootings, which comes after Haaland missed the goal in April’s Champions League quarter-final second leg against Bayern Munich.

That opportunity arose eight minutes before half-time. Julián Álvarez ran for Jack Grealish’s pass down the left channel in the box and delivered a cross that caught John Egan’s arm as the United captain charged down to block. However, Haaland’s left-footed shot slammed into the inside of the post as Wes Foderingham dived the other way.

The United faithful in the Kop behind the goal liked that. “You’re just a shit Billy Sharp” they happily sang in honor of their recently deceased club legend. But it was only a matter of time before City would break through and Haaland actually had his moment.

Jayden Bogle celebrates his unlikely equalizer for Sheffield United. Photo: Michael Regan/Getty Images

United hope they have found the goalscorer to help ignite their fight for survival by introducing Cameron Archer to the crowd before the game, fresh off his £18m transfer from Aston Villa, set for a debut came here too late.

They were strong, well organized and had a plan to break through the counterattack with a top pair of Traoré and Will Osula. But it wasn’t until they fell behind in the middle of the second half that the bonds were broken. Gustavo Hamer, who blocked a fierce shot, and then Anel Almedhodzic, who fired just over the target from an Ederson free-kick, made their first attempts at goal. McBurnie then headed wide from an Olly Norwood corner.

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While Guardiola was recovering from Barcelona surgery, no one ventured into City’s technical area at all in the first half. When there was a stoppage in play as Ben Osborn was being treated before he appeared to suffer a groin injury, United were given equal parts water and tuition while the City players were on their own, quietly chatting on the pitch. Of course it’s easier if you haven’t spent the last quarter of an hour chasing the ball.

Nathan Aké had the ball in the net as Foderingham hesitated, but Rodri was caught offside when he headed Bernardo Silva’s free-kick over the six-yard box. The keeper made a good save against Álvarez and a superb Walker cross went to the back post. City had 85% possession at this point while United defended manfully and Traoré and Osula looked to break through.

Then Jack Robinson seemed to pin Haaland as Grealish tried to cross the ball. George Baldock has been cautioned for a tackle on Grealish more associated with Sunday mornings and FA Cup disagreements. The half-time whistle was euphorically received by the home fans.

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In the second half, City played even harder in the home team’s penalty area. Haaland fired a try just wide of the far post and after Rodri fired a shot just wide of the far post he ran on target but Foderingham saved. Another shot from Álvarez was deflected into the side netting; Walker fell just over a 25-yarder. But the decibel level just soared as the home side scented a narrative to match their dreams.

Even as City scored and Haaland jumped over Robinson so high at the far post to put Grealish’s cross in the goal, Bramall Lane immediately rallied and shouted ‘United, United’. “We are European champions, we score when we want,” was the reply. In the end, it seemed like they were right, much to Walker’s relief.

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