Phil Foden scored his first Premier League goal as Manchester City beat Tottenham 1-0 at the Etihad Stadium to bounce back from Champions League heartbreak and move a step closer to retaining their domestic crown. Manchester City edged closer to the Premier League title as they avenged their European exit to Tottenham by beating them 1-0 on Saturday. According to Opta, the young England U21 international became the first player born in the 2000s to score a Premier League goal for Man City, and is their third youngest scorer in the competition overall (18y 327d).
3 – Phil Foden is the first player born in the 2000s to score a Premier League goal for Man City, and is their third youngest scorer in the competition overall (18y 327d). Chosen. #MCITOT pic.twitter.com/GM3Tns3h76
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) April 20, 2019
Spurs ended City’s European adventure on Wednesday despite losing 4-3 in a controversial and thrilling encounter at the Etihad, but they were unable to dent the champions’ title defence as Pep Guardiola’s men clinched a measure of revenge. An entertaining first period saw just the one goal despite several opportunities at both ends, with Foden – making only his second top-flight start – opening his Premier League account in the fifth minute, though City did lose Kevin De Bruyne to injury.
Spurs were aggrieved to not be awarded a second-half penalty and that ultimately proved crucial as City held on to the slender victory, taking them back above Liverpool to the Premier League’s summit ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Manchester United. Although Spurs started by going close through Son Heung-min, City took an early lead as they did in midweek, Foden nodding in after Sergio Aguero headed a Bernardo Silva delivery back across goal.
— Karan (@KXkp8) April 20, 2019
Spurs responded well as Christian Eriksen tested Ederson and Aymeric Laporte had to make a last-ditch tackle to deny Son, but City looked purposeful in attack and should have won a penalty when Jan Vertonghen sent Silva tumbling in the 20th minute. City continued to grow as the first half progressed, though they lost De Bruyne to what appeared to be a knee injury just before the break, handing Spurs a boost. Proceedings were tighter after the interval, though City could count themselves lucky to not concede a spot-kick – Kyle Walker seemingly handling the ball in the box after a Dele Alli flick.
Raheem Sterling should have wrapped things up with 19 minutes to go when directing Leroy Sane’s cross goalwards, but Paulo Gazzaniga somehow kept it out with his right foot. That ushered in an anxious end for City, with Ederson forced to thwart Lucas Moura, but the hosts dug deep to secure a crucial victory.
Here is what both Guardiola and Phil Foden said after the game.
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola, speaking to Sky Sports: “A lot important. Important for the race for the Premier League. We know we cannot drop points. It was tight, they had more chances than the previous two games. After defeat Wednesday the last two days were tough. “We came back with this sunshine, the effort of the players was incredible.
“Twenty four months doing that, when you have 100 points and 86 now… after what we have done last season, being in the final of the FA Cup, the team was incredible this season and that’s why they don’t have to show me their character. “They (Tottenham) don’t lose anything, we lose the Premier League today (if City lost).”
Manchester City goalscorer Phil Foden, speaking to Sky Sports: “Kun (Aguero) did great to head it back to me. Luckily I was on the line to head in. I am just happy to help the lads today. “Being an attacking midfielder I am always trying to be in the box and today it paid off. “Every player I play with I look up to and try to learn from.”
More from Phil Foden, speaking to Match of the Day: “It still hasn’t fully sunk in. I am just happy to help the team and get the goal. “It’s my first Premier League goal so it will live with me forever. “We knew what they were about because we have played them twice already. It’s hard and we looked a bit leggy but we got the job done.
On only his second Premier League start: “It was a bit of a surprise but I am ready for whenever it comes. “We know we have to win every game to win the Premier League. A few of the lads will watch it (Cardiff v Liverpool) I’ll watch it so we’ll see what happens.”