Saturday 24 March 2018

Manchester City v Manchester United - story of the match

Marouane Fellaini was sent off after clashing with Sergio Aguero
Marouane Fellaini was sent off after clashing with Sergio Aguero

Marouane Fellaini saw red for headbutting Sergio Aguero as Manchester City retained a slim advantage in their top-four battle with Manchester United following a frantic goalless draw at the Etihad Stadium.

Fellaini's moment of madness came six minutes from time in a tense stalemate that leaves City a point in front of their neighbours and in charge of the Champions League race.

Fellaini had been booked moments before for a trip on the City striker and was in wide-eyed and animated mood as he eventually left the pitch, a stunning denouement to a match the home side had dominated without finding the net.


"Wow.... what am I seeing!!!!!" - former United defender Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) appears unable to comprehend the actions of Fellaini.


Yaya Toure. The City midfielder took charge of the game in the first half and dictated much of the play. Unfortunately for City, they were unable to make the most of his influence. The Ivorian, who has been in fine form of late, will leave a big gap if he does leave the club when his contract expires in the summer.


Fellaini's dramatic dismissal provided the main talking point. The Belgian was booked for tripping Aguero and then repeated the offence just seconds later. That alone might have been enough to earn a second yellow, but he then showed his frustration by headbutting Aguero and earning a straight red card for violent conduct. He then protested before finally leaving the field. United were fortunate that moment of stupidity did not cost them a hard-earned point.


With the stakes high and the atmosphere electric, it would not have been surprising if the England manager had turned up at the Etihad Stadium. Gareth Southgate, however, was captured on a different TV sports channel watching something completely different - the Super League clash between Leeds Rhinos and Huddersfield Giants. Perhaps he did not feel the need to check up on the likes of Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard, Luke Shaw or Wayne Rooney. If he does not fancy the north London derby on Sunday, the snooker World Championship is a compelling alternative.


Manchester City

Claudio Bravo: 5

Pablo Zabaleta: 6

Nicolas Otamendi: 6

Vincent Kompany: 7

Aleksandar Kolarov: 6

Fernandinho: 6

Yaya Toure: 8

Raheem Sterling: 7

Kevin De Bruyne: 6

Leroy Sane: 6

Sergio Aguero: 6


Willy Caballero (for Bravo, 79): 5

Jesus Navas (For Sane, 80): 5

Gabriel Jesus (For Sterling, 86): 6

Manchester United

David De Gea: 6

Antonio Valencia: 6

Eric Bailly: 7

Daley Blind: 6

Matteo Darmian: 6

Marouane Fellaini: 3

Michael Carrick: 7

Ander Herrera: 6

Anthony Martial: 5

Marcus Rashford: 6

Henrikh Mkhitaryan: 5


Jesse Lingard (for Martial, 80): 6

Tim Fosu-mensah (for Mkhitaryan, 86): 5

Ashley Young (for Rashford): 5


Middlesbrough v Manchester City (Premier League, April 30)

Manchester United v Swansea (Premier League, April 30)

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