Spurs still have a two point lead over City as the blues crashed to defeat for the first time at home this season.
Goals from Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta meant the points went to Merseyside for the third season in succession as the blues squandered the chance to overtake Spurs in fourth place. To add insult to the scoreline, City manager Roberto Mancini was sent off, along with his Everton counter-part David Moyes for a touchline scramble.
After resisting early City pressure, Everton took the lead on 33 minutes. Arteta played a short free kick to Leighton Baines, who crossed for Cahill to guide his header beyond Shay Given in the City goal.
The blues then lost Stephen Ireland to injury, Shaun Wright-Phillips coming on to replace him, meaning a shift to the left side for Adam Johnson.
City pressed in the second half but the visitors looked like they could comfortably repel any City attack all night. Roque Santa Cruz replaced Johnson and drove a shot over the bar when in a good position.
With the blues pressing forward for an equaliser, it was inevitable that Everton would have a chance to grab a second and it came with five minutes remaining. Jack Rodwell got away down the right and cut inside before squaring for Cahill, who dummied to leave Arteta free to kill the game.
In the final minutes Mancini, clearly frustrated by what was about to be City’s first home defeat of the season, seemed to interpret Moyes’ picking up of the ball as an indication of time wasting and angrily tried to take it back. Referee Peter Walton was not impressed and sent them both to the stands.
So, a first defeat for the blues at home but remain two points clear of Liverpool in sixth place with a game in hand. Perhaps the saving grace of the night was Aston Villa’s home draw with Sunderland. A win for Villa would have seen them jump ahead of City on goal difference.
This defeat is not the end of the world and we still have a chance of qualifying for Europe but with Spurs at home to Portsmouth and Liverpool at home to Sunderland at the weekend, it makes Monday’s game against Wigan a must win game if we are to qualify for Europe.
- Preview: Manchester City vs Liverpool – Prediction, Team News, Line-ups
- How Manchester City will fare in the 2023-24 Champions League
- Manchester City enquire about Florian Wirtz after Kevin de Bruyne injury
- Man City in July: Three pre-season friendlies as Guardiola looks to build on their success last term
- Will Erling Haaland stay long enough to beat Sergio Aguero’s record at Man City?