John Stones clearance defies logic as Liverpool miss out on goal by millimetres
They don’t come much closer than this.
The destination of the Premier League title is often decided by fine margins, and John Stones’ clearance off the line against Liverpool might just be the dictionary definition.
The Reds had the chance to go 10 points clear of last season’s champions with a win, and they looked like they might take the lead when Sadio Mane raced through on goal in the first half.
After Mane’s shot hit the post a mix-up between Stones and Ederson followed, with the ball looping back towards the goal only for the defender to make a heroic clearance.
"it's fine" 😅 pic.twitter.com/JDJikLIRks— Manchester City (@ManCity) January 3, 2019
For those watching at the ground or on television it looked mighty close to being a goal, but the technology confirmed the reality.
Manchester City went on to win the game 2-1 after goals from Sergio Aguero and Leroy Sane.
It really was quite moment for England defender Stones, who will have been glad to see the ball booted clear just seconds after his error.
Stones ZERO— Jan Aage Fjortoft 🏳️🌈 🇳🇴 (@JanAageFjortoft) January 3, 2019
in one second
Meanwhile, others noticed just how close Mohamed Salah was to scoring from Stones’ clearance, the ball bouncing under his legs and away from the goal.
Stones on Salah - greatest nutmeg of all time?— Huw Davies (@thehuwdavies) January 3, 2019
But without goal-line technology, Stones’ work might have counted for nothing.
Wow. That right there is why goal line technology is an amazing, amazing thing. Fantastic work from John Stones with both clearances in the end. #MCILIV— Jon (@JonHamNE) January 3, 2019
Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola’s late scarf-throwing routine prompted a hilarious reworking of the earlier goal-line incident.
Too close to call imo pic.twitter.com/ibGbMYXOYu— Nooruddean (@BeardedGenius) January 3, 2019
City now trail the Reds by just four points – could Stones’ clearance be the springboard for their title challenge?