Leeds United earned a remarkable 2-1 away win over elect champion Man City with Stuart Dallas in the double, despite playing with 10 men for 45 minutes.
Pep Guardiola’s men needed just 11 more points to win the Premier League title, but were greeted by a tough side from Leeds, who took the lead at the Etihad Stadium when Dallas found a way (42 ).
The game swung in favor of City just before the break when Liam Cooper was fired for an ugly lunge on Gabriel Jesus who went from a yellow card to a red after VAR asked Andre Marriner to review the decision on the field monitor.
City set up camp in Leeds’ half with the extra man, but Marcelo Bielsa’s men were stubborn in their defense and it took up to 14 minutes to level him when Ferran Torres struck.
The game only seemed to be going one way from this point on, but Leeds kept digging in and sensational staged a devastating counterattack which was completed by the tireless Dallas (90 + 1) as Leeds took managed to win despite only two shots on goal. at City’s 29.
Man City: Ederson (6), Mendy (5), Cancelo (5), Stones (7), Ake (6), Zinchenko (6), Fernandinho (7), Bernardo (6), Torres (7), Sterling (5), Jesus (5)
Submarines: Gundogan (6), Foden (6)
Leeds: Meslier (7), Ayling (7), Cooper (5), Llorente (7), Alioski (7), Raphinha (7), Dallas (9), Phillips (7), Roberts (6), Bamford (7), Costa (7)
Submarines: Struijk (7), Shackleton (6)
Man of the match:Stuart dallas
How Bielsa destroyed Pep …
City, having made seven changes after their midweek Champions League win over Borussia Dortmund, failed to play with their usual spark early on.
Leeds sat down and looked to strike City’s left with Benjamin Mendy and Nathan Ake targeted as potential weakness. Their best opening saw Tyler Roberts enter the box on the right, but his ball on goal was too far behind Patrick Bamford.
City gradually started to pick up the pace and Torres had a good effort brilliantly blocked by Cooper at close range after a corner as City looked like a major threat from all set pieces.
Raheem Sterling started to see more of the ball as half-time approached, but his finish was missed, hitting a horribly wide first shot, after being hit by Fernandinho.
City were playing with the arrogance of champions but were punished for not trying their luck when Helder Costa broke down on the left and moved on to Bamford. Dallas then hung on to an inviting layoff on the edge of the zone, hitting a firm low shot that left Ederson rooted to the spot as he bounced off the base of the post.
It was a lead that came against the run of the game and Leeds’ hopes to hang on to it almost immediately suffered a heavy blow as Cooper was fired for a bad challenge against Jesus. Marriner initially showed a yellow card after Cooper caught the Brazilian on the knee in his follow-up, but revised it to red after reviewing the incident on the field monitor.
Oleksandr Zinchenko – playing more advanced than usual – warmed Illan Meslier’s palms after the break as City dominated the territory without really forcing the keeper to make nice saves.
Bernardo Silva wasted a glorious opportunity moments later, stolen at close range.
Ilkay Gundogan shot and Fernandinho got a powerful effort from the hand of Meslier, who also saved from Joao Cancelo.
The equalizer finally came 15 minutes before Silva threw the ball into Torres’ path and the Spaniard cut it in front of Meslier.
Many would have expected Bielsa’s side to crumble in the finals, but it is Leeds who would produce the next quality moment on the counterattack.
Dallas broke free and slipped a nice finish between Ederson’s legs. A stunning finish to cap off a perfect day for Bielsa.
Man of the Match: Stuart Dallas
Who else? His goals set him apart from the crowd, both excellently taken, but equally impressive was his work without the ball, especially in the second half when Leeds had to show tremendous courage to eliminate wave after wave of attacks from Manchester City. No player has covered more ground than the Northern Irishman (12.13km) in a performance that will only strengthen his legendary status among Leeds fans. It is a day he will never forget.
- Manchester City suffered their first home loss to a promoted side in 42 Premier League games, since their 0-2 loss to Reading in February 2007.
- Leeds became only the fourth promoted team to win against the Premier League leaders in the history of the competition, following Ipswich at Norwich in December 1992, Derby at Man Utd in April 1997 and Hull City at Arsenal in September 2008.
- Of the 77 teams Man City boss Pep Guardiola has faced in his managerial career, Leeds are one of two teams they have failed to beat (along with Middlesbrough).
- Leeds have scored more goals from outside the area than any other Premier League team this season (12).