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Played
March 21, 2012 7:45 PM GMT
Etihad Stadium — Manchester
Referee:‬ M. Dean‎
Attendance:‬ 46324‎
 
78′ (PG) Sergio Agüero
Gary Cahill 60′
86′ Samir Nasri
 
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Manchester City 2-1 Chelsea

City close gap on neighbours United to one point with goals from Aguero & Nasri after Cahill had put the visitors ahead with a deflected effort, while Tevez returned for the hosts

By Greg Stobart at Etihad Stadium

  • Joe Hart
    81
    42
    3.00

    Joe Hart

    A very quiet night for the City goalkeeper. Made a decent save in the second-half to deny Mata but could do nothing about Cahill's deflected strike.

  • Micah Richards
    95
    36
    3.00

    Micah Richards

    Looked slightly uncomfortable positionally at centre-back but strong and powerful against Torres.

  • Pablo Zabaleta
    112
    34
    3.50

    Pablo Zabaleta

    Defended robustly and provided a dangerous attacking outlet. Set up an early chance for Silva and forced the penalty with a well-struck volley that Essien handled.

  • Gael Clichy
    68
    53
    3.00

    Gael Clichy

    Solid display from the Frenchman, who played virtually as a winger in the final 15 minutes.

  • Kolo Toure
    84
    40
    3.00

    Kolo Toure

    Decent defensive anticipation and strength against both Torres and Drogba.

  • Samir Nasri
    324
    63
    4.00

    Samir Nasri Top of the Match

    The Frenchman looked sharp and energetic throughout the game and sealed the victory with a superb finish clipped over Cech. He had already hit the bar twice and was City's standout player as he drifted into space.

  • David Silva
    90
    72
    3.00

    David Silva

    Showed some glimpses of his quality but not anywhere near his scintillating best. Shot over the bar in the first-half when he should have hit the target.

  • Nigel De Jong
    67
    52
    3.00

    Nigel De Jong

    Played with typical tenacity in the City midfield but lacked quality on the ball as his side found it difficult to break down Chelsea's well-organised defence.

  • Yaya Touré
    151
    40
    3.50

    Yaya Touré

    Tried to drive City forward, particularly in the second-half. Impressive strength and athleticism and classy on the ball.

  • Sergio Agüero
    212
    43
    3.50

    Sergio Agüero

    The Argentine never stopped running for the hosts and equalised from the spot in the 78th minute. His skill and trickery caused Chelsea problems, especially when he pulled out wide.

  • Mario Balotelli
    67
    153
    2.50

    Mario Balotelli

    Replaced by Barry at half-time after barely any involvement in the first-half. He did have one wonderful chance to put City ahead but saw his shot saved by Cech after racing through one-on-one against the Chelsea goalkeeper.

Substitutions

  • Gareth Barry
    121
    40
    3.50

    Gareth Barry

    Came on for Balotelli at half-time and dictated the tempo of the game in the second-half.

  • Edin Dzeko
    148
    46
    3.00

    Edin Dzeko

    Replaced Silva in the 76th minute as City went more direct.

  • Carlos Tévez
    372
    62
    3.00

    Carlos Tévez

    Made his long-awaited return as a 66th minute replacement for De Jong. Greeted by a mixture of boos and cheers - but affirmed his ability with a delicate pass to set up Nasri's winner.

  • Petr Cech
    153
    23
    3.50

    Petr Cech

    Might have expected a busier night but stayed alert to produce an excellent low save to deny Balotelli in the first-half. Could do nothing about either City goal.

  • Branislav Ivanovic
    100
    31
    3.00

    Branislav Ivanovic

    Seemed to feel a muscle injury with his first sprint of the game and was eventually replaced by Bosingwa in the 21st minute.

  • Ashley Cole
    64
    49
    3.00

    Ashley Cole

    Solid defensive display and tidy use of the ball. Seemed reluctant to get forward despite having space to run into.

  • David Luiz
    175
    21
    3.50

    David Luiz

    A very alert defensive display from the Brazilian, especially against the skill and trickery of Aguero. Played his part at the other end by making a nuisance of himself in the build-up to Cahill's goal.

  • Gary Cahill
    133
    33
    3.00

    Gary Cahill

    Strong in the air and took on the responsibility of organising the Chelsea defence in the absence of captain John Terry. Scored the opening goal of the contest with a deflected strike.

  • Ramires
    59
    109
    3.00

    Ramires

    The Brazilian played in an unfamiliar role on the right side but put in a shift for his team and worked hard defensively.

  • Frank Lampard
    46
    196
    2.50

    Frank Lampard

    A quiet night for the midfielder as he played in a more disciplined role than usual. His passing was generally accurate although he presented Balotelli with one superb chance following a loose pass.

  • John Obi Mikel
    82
    137
    3.00

    John Obi Mikel

    Sat at the base of Chelsea's midfield and did a good job of breaking up City's play, especially with the likes of Nasri, Silva and Yaya Toure looking to find space between the lines.

  • Raúl Meireles
    45
    152
    2.50

    Raúl Meireles

    On the periphery of the game and uncomfortable on the left before being replaced by Essien in the 58th minute.

  • Fernando Torres
    352
    66
    3.00

    Fernando Torres

    Fresh from his two goals against Leicester, the Spaniard looked sharp in general play, showing a good touch and turn of pace. Still seemed to panic in the final third and was replaced by Drogba in the 73rd minute.

  • Juan Mata
    93
    159
    0.00

    Juan Mata

    The Spaniard had his moments but never picked up the ball in positions that caused problems for City.

Substitutions

  • José Bosingwa
    52
    239
    2.00

    José Bosingwa Flop of the Match

    Replaced the injured Ivanovic in the 21st minute. Made some rash tackles - one of which resulted in a booking - and was poor positionally in the last 20 minutes.

  • Michael Essien
    53
    182
    2.50

    Michael Essien

    Replaced Meireles in the 58th minute but didn't play with the drive and energy expected of him.

  • Didier Drogba
    69
    194
    3.00

    Didier Drogba

    Came on for Torres in the 73rd minute. Made some decent runs but had no real sights on goal.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
30 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
16 0
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man Utd.
15 2