With the scores level after Phil Foden levelled Jack Harrison’s 29th-minute opener, the blues were awarded a penalty, which was duly dispatched by Julian Alvarez. However, there was some debate over the award, with many saying the correct decision was made, but the law surrounding handball is wrong. Bernardo Silva added a third near the end as City closed the gap on leader Liverpool to just five points.
City were a bit light for personnel going into the match with Jeremy Doku, Erling Haaland and Kevin de Bruyne out injured, and also lost John Stones in the first half due to injury just before half time.
By then, City were a goal down against the run of play, when Harrison flicked the home side into the lead. The blues had dominated for much of the match before Harrison’s goal in the 29th minute, with Jordan Pickford twice denying Alvarez, while also preventing Jack Grealish from grabbing a goal.
Finding the back of the net would have put City out of sight by the time Harrison took advantage of some sloppy defending by the blues to slot home. The former City man almost had a second soon after, only to be denied by a fine save by Ederson in the City goal.
Stones saw his return to Everton end in the 42nd minute after a clash saw him replaced by Josko Gvardiol as the blues went in at the break a goal down.
The second half saw a renewed purpose by the blues, who began to pile the pressure on the Everton defence in search of the all-important equaliser. The blues were building gradually, only for Phil Foden to take matters into his own hands.
Spotting Pickford out of position, Foden tried his luck form long-range and he saw his left-foot shot beat Pickford at his near post and nestle into the corner of the goal.
From then on, it was all City. Grealish was inches away from poking City ahead and, when Nathan Ake’s shot on the turn struck Amadou Onana’s hand, the referee took some time before finally pointing to the spot. Everton felt aggrieved but Alvarez couldn’t have cared less about their complaints, casually stepping up to fire the penalty straight down the middle to give City the lead.
The award led to considerable debate, with ex-professionals stating it was harsh, however, the referee went with the current rules, which state it was a spot-kick.
The home side had their moments, which saw Dominic Calvert-Lewin fire agonisingly wide for the Merseysiders when it looked odds on a goal.
But the blues made the game safe with four minutes remaining as Silva curled the ball home following a horrendous mistake by Pickford. Trying to play the ball out from the back, Pickford only succeeded in finding the City man and the Portuguese midfielder held off the attention of an Everton defender pulling on his arm to finish in style.
Foden still had time to hit the post and also saw another drive saved by Pickford as City looked to further increase the scoreline, but the job was done and City brought the three points home to Manchester.
Final Score: Everton 1-3 Manchester City