London: They were destined to retain the Premier League title and in spite of falling 0-2 behind by the 70th minute, Manchester City conjured up sheer magic in five minutes. In those five minutes, the Blues scored three goals through Ilkay Gundogan (76th and 81st) and Rodri (78th) to go past Aston Villa and win the Premier League title. Pep Guardiola’s team did the unthinkable when even their most ardent fans had given up hope.
Liverpool were breathing hard on City’s neck with just a point separating the two sides before the game began. When Manchester City looked down and out, Liverpool were 2-1 up against the Wolves. It seemed that nothing could catch up. But City players thought otherwise. In a six-minute spell they scripted a turnaround that only champions can conjure up, that only men of steel can think about.
In the end after 38 games of the toughest league in the world, City ended with 93 points to emerge champions while Liverpool missed out finishing on 92 points. And with the results Sunday, Liverpool’s hopes of a quadruple disappeared. They can still make it a treble though if they win the Champions League title beating Liverpool May 28 at Paris.
In the Liverpool-Wolves game it was the underdogs who had taken the lead with a third minute goal by Pedro Neto. However, Sadio Mane (24th) restored parity and then Mo Salah (84th) and Andrew Robertson (89th) ensured all the three points from the game for Liverpool. But in the end it was not enough.
City looked a completely disjointed in the first half against Aston Villa. Their usual free-flowing passing game was missing. Matty Cash put the visitors ahead in the 37th minute at the Etihad. And then when Philippe Coutinho doubled the tally for Villa in the 70th minute, it seemed that the title was going to Liverpool. However, Gundogan and Rodri thought otherwise.
Coming off the bench Gundogan scored two goals, the second one being a peach. He sped past two Aston Villa defenders as Kevin de Bruyne danced into the Villa box and laid the perfect ball. Gundogan was in flash to poke the ball home.
Prior to the winning goal, Rodri had restored parity for City driving the ball home from the edge of the Villa box. Before that Raheem Sterling had found Gundogan with the perfect cross who slotted the ball into the net to begin the turnaround.