Manchester City survive early scare to beat Liverpool to Premier League title on final dayMay 12, 2019
Manchester City retained the Premier League after surviving a scare on the final day of the season to eventually see off Brighton and beat Liverpool to the title.
For a couple of minutes, Liverpool were champions on the final day as they led Wolves with Manchester City falling behind at the Amex, but Pep Guardiola’s men found their stride to finish on 98 points — one ahead of their nearest challengers. Liverpool’s 97 points is the highest total amassed by a runner-up in English top flight history.
Glenn Murray gave Brighton a shock lead on 26 minutes, his clever flick from a corner sending Liverpool fans at Anfield into delirium, but City soon responded.
First, Sergio Aguero struck through Mat Ryan’s legs after a fine touch from David Silva two minutes after City fell behind and then Aymeric Laporte headed unmarked from a corner on 38 minutes to make it 2-1.
Riyad Mahrez, making a rare start, finished excellently just after the hour mark and Ilkay Gundogan’s majestic free kick put City further in control as their fans celebrated another success.
City were comfortable in the second half as the goals flowed, killing off any lingering Liverpool hope and making it the first time a team has retained the league since Manchester United in 2009.
With the title destiny in their hands before kick-off, City started tentatively with Brighton bright and posing problems on the counter attack.
Bernardo Silva had a good chance to settle the nerves early on but he was blocked in the area as he burst through on goal.
City were sloppy in patches and fell behind when Murray got ahead of his marker to beat Ederson and put Brighton 1-0 up. It sparked joyous scenes at Anfield as Liverpool were top as it stood, but City hit back.
Aguero got City back on level terms with a fine finish past Ryan and then Laporte’s header put Guardiola’s men in front before the break.
Mahrez then jinked his way through and finished with a brilliant right-footed shot into the top corner to make it 3-1 to the visitors. Lewis Dunk was turned inside out by Mahrez, whose effort was met with exuberant celebrations on the City bench.
Gundogan put the finishing touches on a fine win and another Premier League title when he hit a sublime free kick 18 minutes from time as City finally saw off a spirited title challenge from Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, who beat Wolves 2-0.
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