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
1Chelsea14111232112134
2Arsenal1494133141931
3Liverpool1493235181730
4Manchester CityMan City1493230151530
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs1476124101427
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd145631916321
7West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom145542017320
8Everton145541716120
9Stoke CityStoke145451619-319
10Bournemouth145361922-318
11Watford145361824-618
12Southampton144551315-217
13Middlesbrough143651315-215
14Crystal Palace144282426-214
15Burnley144281223-1114
16Leicester CityLeicester143471724-713
17West Ham UnitedWest Ham143381529-1412
18Sunderland143291424-1011
19Hull City143291129-1811
20Swansea CitySwansea142391631-159