Result: Manchester City 3-3 Sunderland

Roberto Mancini
© PA Photos
Aleksandar Kolarov scores a late goal as Manchester City fight back from a two-goal deficit to claim a draw against Sunderland.

Aleksandar Kolarov struck a late goal as Manchester City fought back from a two-goal deficit to secure a share of the spoils at home to Sunderland this afternoon.

The visiting Black Cats started the brighter of the two sides and created the first chance of the match when Stephane Sessegnon found Craig Gardner inside the area. The former Aston Villa midfielder was unable to keep his effort on target though, shooting into the side netting.

Sunderland continued to dominate the encounter and their pressure was rewarded in the 31st minute. Sessegnon squared for Larsson, who sent the ball past Joe Hart from 18 yards out.

With two minutes of the half remaining, hosting City drew themselves level. Edin Dzeko hit the ground inside the area and Mario Balotelli stepped up to convert the resultant penalty.

However, Nicklas Bendtner ensured that the away side would take the lead into the break when he headed in a cross from Sessegnon.

City came out for the second half with a more positive outlook, but they were unable to find a route past Simon Mignolet in the Sunderland goal.

Their failure to draw level was punished in the 54th minute when Larsson claimed his second of the afternoon, rounding off a break-away move.

Carlos Tevez came off the bench as City looked for a route back into the fixture and the Argentine had the chance to pull a goal back soon after. However, the striker could only drill his effort into the side netting.

Just as it looked as though City would slump to their first home defeat of the season, Balotelli claimed his brace when he struck into the roof of the net in the 85th minute.

Then, barely a minute later, full-back Kolarov collected possession just outside the area and he struck a fierce shot past Mignolet.

City now trail leaders and rivals Manchester United by two points, having played a game more.


Nicklas Bendtner
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CLeicester CityLeicester382312368363281
2Arsenal382011765362971
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs381913669353470
4Manchester CityMan City381991071413066
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd381991049351466
6Southampton381891159411863
7West Ham UnitedWest Ham381614865511462
8Liverpool3816121063501360
9Stoke CityStoke38149154155-1451
10Chelsea381214125953650
11Everton381114135955447
12Swansea CitySwansea381211154252-1047
13Watford38129174050-1045
14West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom381013153448-1443
15Crystal Palace38119183951-1242
16Bournemouth38119184567-2242
17Sunderland38912174862-1439
RNewcastle UnitedNewcastle38910194465-2137
RNorwich CityNorwich3897223967-2834
RAston Villa3838272776-4917