The India Times Online

As title-chasing Manchester City defeats Bournemouth, Phil Foden scores

<p>Manchester City, who are vying for the Premier League championship, defeated Bournemouth 1-0 behind goals from Phil Foden, bringing them to within one point of leaders Liverpool on Saturday. City capitalized on Liverpool’s matchup with Chelsea in the League Cup final on Sunday to narrow the deficit in their last match against Jurgen Klopp’s team. At Dean Court, Foden scored in the first half, and despite a difficult second half, City won for the 13th time in their previous 14 games in all competitions.</p>
<p><img decoding=”async” class=”alignnone wp-image-442706″ src=”” alt=” as title chasing manchester city defeats bournemouth phil foden scores 11zon cropp” width=”1076″ height=”809″ title=”As title-chasing Manchester City defeats Bournemouth, Phil Foden scores 12″ srcset=” 644w,×113.jpeg 150w” sizes=”(max-width: 1076px) 100vw, 1076px” /></p>
<p>Pep Guardiola’s team wasn’t playing at their best on the south coast as they attempted a historic fourth straight Premier League crown, but they showed the tenacity needed to grind out an important win.</p>
<p>“I’ve never seen Phil Foden play football like this before. I’m incredibly happy with everyone’s involvement, remarked Guardiola.</p>
<p>“I’m not sure how long it will take us to finish every tournament, but we are still there. They really are supermen.”</p>
<p>Guardiola said, “They had seven days to prepare for this game but we had three,” frustrated by City’s lack of preparation time due to a busy schedule. In the Premier League, some clubs play with less recovery than the others.</p>
<p>Overall, the manner we defended because we had to was amazing. You can’t expect perfection from athletes who are fatigued and lacking in recuperation because they are human.”</p>
<p>Liverpool is still leading, but City is closing the gap after going 17 games without losing in all competitions since their December loss at Aston Villa.</p>
<p>“Every three days for years, not just this season, years,” Guardiola praised City’s dynastic rule in the Premier League. Even if it’s challenging, they are succeeding. My respect for each and every player is immense.”</p>
<p>On Wednesday, City travels to Luton for their FA Cup fifth round match. The following weekend, they face Manchester United for a vital league match.</p>
<p>Kevin De Bruyne was benched by Guardiola, but City swiftly found their rhythm.</p>
<p>Erling Haaland sped towards goal after Foden flashed a pinpoint ball to him, but his effort flew wide.</p>
<p>Haaland was almost punished by Bournemouth as Milos Kerkez’s well-aimed shot forced an excellent save from Ederson.</p>
<p>However, City were soon back on the attack as the dynamic Foden sent a long-range shot that forced Bournemouth goalie Neto to make his first save.</p>
<p>In the twenty-fourth minute, Foden gave the visitors the lead, a warning that Bournemouth disregarded.</p>
<p>Haaland pushed his way into the penalty area and fired a shot that Foden simply needed to touch into the empty goal after Neto could only push it out.</p>
<p>City bound by ropes</p>
<p>Foden’s season-high 16 goals in all competitions came just after a spectacular moment of magic from Bernardo Silva as the City midfielder curled just wide.</p>
<p>Despite not having won a league game since Boxing Day, Bournemouth rallied to give City a real worry.</p>
<p>Just before halftime, Ederson made a great stop to deny Ryan Christie’s effort, and the Brazilian was called upon again almost away after the break.</p>
<p>Outside of the City area, Justin Kluivert was allowed too much time and space, as Ederson stopped the Bournemouth forward’s low drive at full stretch.</p>
<p>Guardiola was once again shifted uncomfortably on the touchline as Bournemouth gained confidence after another close victory over Brentford in midweek.</p>
<p>Marcus Tavernier mishandled Antoine Semenyo’s cross to give himself a chance to equalize.</p>
<p>Shortly thereafter, Tavernier made an even bigger error by missing the goal from 10 yards out.</p>
<p>Usually so composed, City were faltering for once, but Ederson kept their advantage intact with an incredible stop from a header by Dominic Solanke.</p>
<p>In Haaland’s last action before Julian Alvarez took over, Neto made a nice stop to terminate the player’s strong charge.</p>
<p>Up to the very last second, City were tense. However, Dango Ouattara of Bournemouth missed a wonderful opportunity, and Enes Unal’s header just missed.</p>
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