MX23RW : Monday, July 23 12:07:36

Live Commentary: Manchester City 0-1 Chelsea - as it happened

Relive Sports Mole's coverage of the highly-anticipated Premier League encounter between Manchester City and Chelsea.

A first-half goal from Branislav Ivanovic was enough to give Chelsea a 1-0 win against Manchester City.

After a back-and-forth 30 minutes, the Serbian defender fired an unstoppable left-foot shot from 20 yards that left the Etihad Stadium stunned.

Chelsea hit the woodwork three times during an enthralling 90 minutes, and although Manchester City were denied on several occasions by Petr Cech, the Blues were fully deserving of the three points.

Read below to see how the action unfolded in the North-West.

7.01pmHello, and welcome to Sports Mole's live coverage of the match between Manchester City and Chelsea in the Premier League.

7.03pmWell, it doesn't get much bigger than this, does it? Well, not during this season anyway! While Arsenal have led the way for much of the season, it has been Manchester City and Chelsea who have remained favourites for the Premier League title with the bookmakers.

7.07pmThe team news is emerging from the Etihad. Full details to follow.

7.09pmBefore I give you the teams, there is a rumour that kickoff might be delayed due to traffic congestion. Chelsea reportedly only arrived at the ground 10 minutes ago.

7.11pmMANCHESTER CITY XI: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Nastasic, Kolarov; Navas, Demichelis, Toure, Silva; Dzeko, Negredo

7.12pmCHELSEA XI: Cech; Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Azpilicueta; Ramires, Matic, Luiz; Willian, Hazard; Eto'o

7.16pmWe already knew that Sergio Aguero would be missing for City, but the big news coming from the home changing room is that Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho is absent from Manuel Pellegrini's side. That's a huge blow. Martin Demichelis has been moved further forward as his replacement, with Matija Nastasic coming into the centre of defence to partner Vicent Kompany.

7.19pmAs for Chelsea, Jose Mourinho opts to bring in Nemanja Matic for his first Premier League start since returning to Stamford Bridge in place of Oscar. Eden Hazard and Willian are expected to play on either flank with Ramires operating in Oscar's usual attacking-midfield role. New signing Mohamed Salah is on the bench.

7.21pmWhat do you make of that? While Yaya Toure has taken the plaudits for his contribution to Manchester City this season, he has been given the freedom to play by the missing Brazilian, who reportedly has a muscle strain. It will be interesting to see how Martin Demichelis adapts to the role. He has played in the defensive-midfield role previously in his career, but he is yet to feature there in the Premier League.

7.25pmMuch will be said of Chelsea's starting lineup. Jose Mourinho criticised West Ham United's defensive approach to their game at Stamford Bridge last week, but the Portuguese coach has definitely erred on the side of caution by relegating Oscar to the substitutes' bench. That said, Ramires is more than capable of providing a threat from midfield and his energy in the centre of the park could prove important as the game goes on.

7.28pmThe latest on a possible delayed kickoff is that no official decision has been made. Apparently, both teams arrived late due to local traffic, but whether that will see the start of the match put back by 15 minutes, only time will tell.

7.30pmWhile we wait for a decision to be made, if there is one to be made at all, let's see who is on the bench for either side.

7.32pmMANCHESTER CITY SUBSTITUTES: Pantilimon, Boyata, Clichy, Milner, Rodwell, Lopes, Jovetic

7.33pmCHELSEA SUBSTITUTES: Schwarzer, Cole, Mikel, Lampard, Oscar, Salah, Ba

7.35pmInjuries to Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri has left City a little light in terms of options, but Manuel Pellegrini will be delighted to have Stevan Jovetic back to full fitness. The Premier League have yet to see the best of a player who performed consistently in Italy with Fiorentina.

7.39pmChelsea supporters will be excited to see Mohamed Salah make the bench for this evening's match. The Egyptian is under pressure to prove to the club's fans that he is a suitable replacement for Juan Mata, but if he can adapt to the speed and intensity of England's top flight, he could be a superb acquisition for the Blues.

7.42pmHave you all given our Instagram account a follow? If not, get on it!

7.45pmWith no announcement being made regarding a change of kickoff time, I would expect us to be getting underway in 15 minutes. I don't know about you, but I can't wait for this one. Manchester City are 11 wins from 11 games at the Etihad in the Premier League this campaign, while the visitors have won seven of their last nine.

7.51pmPREDICTION! Manchester City will come out of the blocks at 100mph, but Jose Mourinho should be alert to this and will likely instruct his side to sit deep. If City strike early, it will force a change in tactics for Chelsea, but if they can survive the early bombardment, then they are capable of achieving a positive result. However, over the course of the 90 minutes, City's tenacity at home could be too much for the Blues to take. 3-1 to City.

7.55pmWhile City can return to the top of the Premier League table with a win, Chelsea will remain third even if they stun their hosts on their home patch. If the Blues lose, they will be left facing a six-point deficit, which would be tough to overturn with just 14 games remaining.

7.56pmThe two teams are in the tunnel. The Chelsea mascot is nearly as tall as John Terry!

1 minStrap yourself. Manchester City get us underway at the Etihad Stadium.

2 minChelsea are all over the place from the first whistle. There is confusion between Gary Cahill and Petr Cech on the edge of the Chelsea penalty area, but David Silva and Alvaro Negredo fail to capitalise.

3 minMore aggressive running from Negredo helps him power past the Chelsea defence, but he blazes his shot from an acute angle high over the crossbar. Before that, Chelsea got in down the right, but Willian saw his cross blocked. It's been a very fast start!

6 minChelsea are trying to play the ball about in midfield, but they are soon being pressed by City. It results in Gary Cahill losing the ball, and the visitors aren't being allowed to settle. Vincent Kompany is lucky to escape a yellow card after barging into the back of Samuel Eto'o.

9 minChelsea break in numbers, and City look in trouble. City's two central defenders collide to give Willian a chance to cross from the right, but it's a poor delivery and the ball is blocked for a corner. The set piece comes to nothing, but Chelsea have possession in their own half.

10 minCHANCE! How have City not scored? A superb flowing move from the hosts ends up with Aleksandar Kolarov firing in a sublime cross from the left, but it somehow manages to evade Yaya Toure at the back post. Agonisingly close!

13 minDISALLOWED GOAL! Some stunning play from Eden Hazard sees him carry the ball across the pitch before playing a delicate ball through to Samuel Eto'o. However, after the Cameroonian had passed the ball back to Ramires, the referee blew for offside.

16 minFor a game of this magnitude, this is a refreshingly open start. Jose Mourinho has left the Chelsea bus on the car park. Yaya Toure goes close for City, but his 20-yard effort curls marginally over the bar.

18 minCHANCE! Yaya Toure has been absolutely immense so far. He surges from midfield to cross from the byline for David Silva, but the Spaniard's flick from six yards goes wide of the far post. City should be ahead.

20 minSHOT! Samuel Eto'o creates an opportunity for himself on the left-hand side of the penalty area, but while his attempt is on target, it is straight at Joe Hart.

22 minChelsea win a free kick after Eden Hazard is taken out by Matija Nastasic. David Luiz takes responsibility for the kick, but less said about it, the better. (It went about 20 yards over the crossbar...)

23 minSHOT! The action is relentless at the Etihad. Like Eto'o did moments ago, Edin Dzeko turned on the edge of the box to create an opening, but he couldn't get enough bend on his shot, and it went wide.

27 minCHANCE! Oh dear. Chelsea engineer a four-on-one break through Willian. The Brazilian accelerated forward with plenty of intent, but after setting up Ramires to fire straight at Joe Hart, Willian's attempted overhead kick went skywards. Chelsea are in this match, but they have to do better in attacking areas.

30 minWe have reached the half-hour mark in Manchester, and it's been a cracking encounter so far. Both teams are going for it, but their efforts inside the penalty area have left a lot to be desired.

32 minGOAL! Manchester City 0-1 Chelsea (Ivanovic)

32 minI know what you're thinking - a header from a corner, right? Think again. After Ramires saw a shot blocked from inside the penalty area, the ball rebounded to Branislav Ivanovic, who powered a left-footed strike from 20 yards into the bottom corner.

33 minBOOKING! It's been a lively 60 seconds for Ivanovic. He has gone into the referee's book for a foul on Jesus Navas, but it's very harsh.

37 minRight now, Manchester City are there for the taking at the back, especially down the left. Willian wastes an opportunity to pull the ball back for Ramires, and then Eden Hazard creates a chance for himself, but Joe Hart saves well down to his left. Martin Demichelis goes into the book for a crude challenge on Hazard.

39 minDespite their frailties at the back, Manchester City are back on the attack, and it takes an intervention from Cesar Azpilicueta to stop the ball finding the feet of Edin Dzeko inside the penalty area.

40 minBOOKING! That's another harsh caution for Chelsea. Nemanja Matic misses out on getting the ball after a sharp turn from Yaya Toure, and the referee deems it enough to hand him a yellow card.

41 minSHOT! A corner from the right finds Edin Dzeko, but after the Bosnian composes himself, he can only blaze the ball over the bar.

42 minBOOKING! Aleksandar Kolarov goes into the book for a late challenge on David Luiz. Chelsea have a free kick on the right, and despite appearing to win a corner, the referee gives it the other way.

44 minSHOT! So unlucky! Eden Hazard does terrific down the right, and although his cross doesn't find its intended target, the ball falls to Samuel Eto'o, whose first-time strike from a tight angle rebounds off the inside of the post and flies out for a throw in. Unbelievable game!

45+1 minSamuel Eto'o very nearly steals in ahead of Vincent Kompany. I've never seen the City defence look this open. They survive, and they need half time.

45+3 minHALF TIME: Manchester City 0-1 Chelsea

8.48pmMike Dean blows the half-time whistle and Chelsea lead Manchester City at the break. It's been a breathless 45 minutes. I need half time as much as City do.

8.52pmChelsea had just 33% of possession, but you will struggle to find a better 45 minutes from an away team this season. They've rode their luck at time - City have had 11 attempts on goal - but the Blues look so dangerous on the break, and if they had been more clinical in the penalty area, this game could have been over.

8.55pmI can't see Manuel Pellegrini changing anything just yet, but he will definitely be drumming into his players, especially his defence, that things need to improve. If he does opt to make an alteration, Martin Demichelis could be the one to make way.

9.02pmThe players are slowly emerging for the second half. If the second 45 minutes are anything like the first, we are in for a treat!

9.03pmIt should be noted that Manchester City haven't failed to score at home in the league in over three years. Chelsea will probably need to score again...

46 minChelsea get us back underway.

47 minCity have started the second half strongly, but when their first opportunity arrives, Edin Dzeko nods the ball over the bar under pressure from Gary Cahill.

48 minCHANCE! Eden Hazard is enjoying a stellar season, and it nearly continues here. He glides past four Manchester City players, before laying the ball off to Branislav Ivanovic. His shot is saved, and after the ball rebounded to Wilian, he saw an effort deflected wide. Chelsea could have doubled their advantage there.

50 minSHOT! Back up the other end, Yaya Toure drives a shot marginally wide of the far post. This has been a stunning spectacle.

52 minWOODWORK! Oh my word! I never knew that Nemanja Matic had that in his locker. The returning Blues midfielder has let fly from 30 yards, only to see his shot cannon off the post and go wide. What an effort.

56 minVincent Kompany barges Ramires off the ball, but the referee gives a free kick. Before the set piece, Manuel Pellegrini has substituted Alvaro Negredo for Stevan Jovetic. Interesting. David Luiz's shot strikes the wall and goes out.

59 minEden Hazard has displayed more tricks than Dynamo tonight. He moves past Pablo Zabaleta in a flash to help Willian buy a free kick off Yaya Toure.

61 minDavid Luiz clips the heels of Stevan Jovetic, and Manchester City have a free kick from 30 yards out. Aleksandar Kolarov is very interested. It's a decent effort from the Serbian, but it was always going over the crossbar.

65 minThe referee gives a free kick to Manchester City in a threatening position after a handball from Nemanja Matic. It wasn't deliberate. However, the delivery is poor, and Chelsea clear. This match is still extremely open.

67 minWOODWORK! Chelsea hit the woodwork for the third time in this match! Willian floated a corner to the penalty spot, and Gary Cahill's header struck the post with Joe Hart beaten. Chelsea should be three or four goals in front, but it remains just the one.

69 minBack up the other end, a last-ditch challenge from Gary Cahill prevents City from a tap-in. Moments later, the same player nearly diverts the ball into his own net! I can't keep up. What a game.

73 minA tremendous turn from Yaya Toure sees him caught by Willian...or should it be the other way around? Chelsea should have the free kick, but it's Man City's just 25 yards out and in a perfect position for Aleksandar Kolarov. David Silva takes it though, and what a save from Petr Cech! The Czech stopper clawed the ball from the top corner.

75 minCHANCE! Manchester City put together another fine move, but after Aleksandar Kolarov drives the ball across goal, David Silva miscues a shot from 12 yards and the ball trickles wide.

78 minJose Mourinho is yet to make a change. Surely one is imminent? It's been a surreal effort from his side.

79 minDavid Luiz tries one of the most audacious volleys that you will ever see, and it goes over the bar. It allows Chelsea to get back though, which was the most important thing in that situation.

83 minSUBSTITUTION! Chelsea make their first change, introducing Oscar in place of Samuel Eto'o.

85 minEden Hazard does superbly to win a corner for his side. Manchester City switch off to allow Chelsea to play a quick ball, but they manage to survive after Joe Hart slides out to claim a through ball.

86 minManchester City are really piling on the pressure now and have won a succession of corners, but Chelsea are defending for their lives!

87 minBOOKING! Controversy! Matija Nastasic could be sent off for a professional foul on Oscar, but because the incident occurred on the halfway line, the referee has given him a yellow. Debatable one, that...

90 minThere will be three minutes of added-on time.

90+1 minSuperb defending from Gary Cahill, but Manchester City have a corner. The ball comes in from Jesus Navas, but it's cleared.

90+2 minSUBSTITUTION! John Obi Mikel comes on for Willian. Willian gets booked for taking his time to come off the pitch.

90+3 minSHOT! What a save from Petr Cech, who tips the ball over from a dipping Stevan Jovetic shot.

90+5 minFULL TIME: Manchester City 0-1 Chelsea

9.54pmThe full-time whistle goes, and Chelsea have produced a simply stunning performance to end Manchester City's 100% home record. For me, that was the display of the season. Clean sheets at the Etihad Stadium don't exist, do they?!

9.56pmManchester City were by no means poor this evening, but they were met by a Chelsea outfit whose drive and desire to succeed was remarkable. There were so many outstanding performances.

9.58pmThat will be all from Sports Mole for this match, but please stick around - I'm sure a few people will have a few things to say, including a jubilant Jose Mourinho. Thank you for joining us this evening. That was pretty special from Chelsea. Goodbye for now.

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Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Hull City at Stamford Bridge on August 18, 2013
Read Next:
Ivanovic: 'Chelsea ready for City battle'

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