Foden’s superb brace helps seal a memorable derby day win for Manchester Blues

Dylan Hand

Phil Foden netted twice in the second half, as his side came from behind to beat Manchester United 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium.

The pressure was on for Manchester City coming into Sunday’s derby game against their local rivals. A win was essential to remain a single point behind league leaders Liverpool after Darwin Nunez’s last-minute winner at the City Ground put the Reds 4 points clear at the top. Contrary to the scoreline, United started the stronger of the two sides. In the 8th minute, Marcus Rashford opened the scoring with a stunning strike from outside the box, after a sweeping counterattack move. 

City then piled on the pressure for the rest of the half, racking 18 shots in the first half. Despite the number of shots, the Red Devils’ defence limited the home side to very few clear-cut chances. The most notable of which came on the verge of half-time, when star striker Erling Haaland miraculously put the ball over the bar from inside the 6-yard box, after a Phil Foden cross. This coupled with City’s other wasted chances meant the visitors headed for the tunnel with a slender lead at half-time. 

The second half saw a rejuvenated City side, who constantly pressured their visitors. This effort was rewarded in the 56th minute when Foden picked up the ball on the edge of the United box before riffling a shot into Onana’s goal. City was spurred on by their home crowd following the goal, and soon found themselves in the lead, after another Foden goal in the 80th minute. Haaland then put the game to bed in stoppage time after a blunder by United midfielder Sofyan Amrabat, gifted the Norwegian a guilt edge chance with which he made no mistake. 

City racked up an astonishing 27 shots against Manchester United, which totalled more than the away side’s possession statistic of 26%, a true show of the Blues’ dominance. Despite the result, Manchester United Manager Erik Ten Haag was pleased with his side’s performance, speaking with MUTV he said, “They played good, I think it was small margins, it could have gone anyway… I am happy with the performance of the team.”

This was the reigning premier league champion’s 19th win of the season, which may yet prove pivotal, as they hunt down league leaders Liverpool with 11 games remaining in the season. 

Dylan Hand