Guardiola reign starts with home win

Manchester City produced a professional performance to beat a resiliant Sunderland side 2-1 in Pep Guardiola's first match as a Premier League manager at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday evening.

  • Manchester City 2-1 Sunderland
  • Aguero opens the scoring 
  • Man City dominate possession
  • Defoe draws Sunderland level
  • Debutant McNair scores own-goal

Match summary 

Pep Guardiola's reign at Manchester City in the English Premier League started with a 2-1 win over Sunderland at the Etihad Stadium – but David Moyes' Black Cats made it difficult for the Spanish tactician.

City seemed to be cruising when Sergio Aguero slotted home a fourth-minute penalty after Patrick van Aanholt had brought down Raheem Sterling in the area.

But Sunderland hit back to drew level midway through the second half with a typical poacher’s effort from veteran striker Jermaine Defoe.

After the 34-year-old went off, however, his replacement, Paddy McNair, was forced into heading the ball into his own net late into the game.

Full report

Despite a lack of real goal-scoring chances in the game, Manchester City thoroughly deserved their victory with an impressive possession-based performance, typical of a Pep Guardiola-coached side.

The first goal of the new era at Manchester City took precisely four minutes to arrive.

Fernandinho's header released Raheem Sterling down the right before Patrick van Aanholt dived in rashly to bring him down in the box, allowing Sergio Aguero to step up and smash home the opener.

In a tactical setup, whereby City's full-backs tucked inside, they virtually created another line in midfield, which seemed to confuse the Sunderland defence at times.

Wingers Raheem Sterling and Nolito enjoyed the by-line almost unmarked with opportunities to take on defenders one-on-one, but the result was ultimately just plenty of possession.

The Black Cats did well to prevent them from creating any fluidity in their attacks in the final third and surprisingly they were rewarded for their efforts when veteran Jermaine Defoe popped up with a goal in the 71st minute, against the run of play.

Fabio Borini did well before ex-City midfielder Jack Rodwell slipped the ball through to Defoe inside the box, and he didn't need an invitation to slot the ball past an onrushing Willy Cabellero.

However, the celebrations were short-lived as a late Paddy McNair own goal secured the former Barcelona manager his first win in English Premier League football.

Three points… #mcfc #mancity #manchestercity

A photo posted by Manchester City (@mancity) on