Football Features

Man City suffer first home defeat in 288 days: Big stats & stories from the Etihad & Emirates

By Harry Edwards

Published: 16:13, 6 October 2019

With the Premier League feeling the effects of a packed European schedule, there were three games kicking off at 2pm on Sunday.

Chelsea’s trip to Southampton was the headline of the early slot with Frank Lampard’s men running out 4-1 winners.

But at the same time there were two other matches being played out without television coverage in the UK. At the Emirates, Arsenal beat Bournemouth 1-0 while Manchester City lost 2-0 to Wolverhampton Wanderers at the Eithad.

But what happened in these games? We’ve got you covered.

1. David Luiz opens his account for Arsenal

Since signing from Chelsea in the summer, David Luiz has been subject to quite a bit of criticism at Arsenal. The Brazilian has not had the desired effect on the Gunners’ defence so far, with the side still looking weak at the back.

But on Sunday afternoon he showed the danger he can cause in the opposition penalty area, giving Arsenal the lead inside 10 minutes.

The goal came from a corner sent in by Nicolas Pepe, with Luiz running towards the front post to beat all others and head past Aaron Ramsdale.

It was the Brazilian’s first goal for Arsenal and 12th in total in the Premier League, 11 of which have come in London. Only Liverpool have conceded to Luiz outside the capital in the Premier League, while Fulham are the only home side to have allowed the Brazilian to score.

2. Arsenal continue perfect home record against Cherries

It wasn’t the best second half, but Arsenal managed to hold on to their win against Bournemouth, continuing their perfect record at home to the Cherries.

Arsenal have now hosted Bournemouth six times across all competitions, winning all six games, scoring 17 goals and conceding two. Only against Gainsborough Trinity do the Gunners have a better 100%-win ratio across all competitions, with that run currently at eight.

3. Wolves showing their teeth

Wolves were pretty much a disaster at the start of the 2019/20 Premier League season, as they had to wait until their seventh game to get a win on the board – beating winless Watford last weekend.

They followed that up with a hard-fought victory away to Besiktas in the Europa League on Thursday, but hardly anyone would have expected them to pull up a shock at the Etihad.

However, Nuno Espirito Santo’s men were simply excellent on Sunday afternoon, exploiting every weakness Man City have shown over the past two weeks – and some they didn’t even know they had.

In particular, Wolves’ front trio of Adama Traore, Raul Jimenez and Patrick Cutrone were on fire, constantly hassling City’s makeshift defence – with the former grabbing two goals.

4. Adama Traore breaks drought

“No end product” was always the cry when it came to Adama Traore, and there was good reason behind it.

Known for his pace, Traore was a danger to any team until he got close to the goal, struggling to both create and score. In his first 72 Premier League appearances, he managed just one goal.

But on his 73rd at the Eithad, Traore tripled his tally, scoring both goals in the shock win. The first came after a good break from Jimenez who left Otamendi on the floor before Traore coolly finished past Ederson. It was his first goal since September 1, 2018 – a run of 32 Premier League games.

And he added his second in injury time, running into space from the halfway line to keep his composure and secure the win.

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5. Man City’s home woes

The Etihad was a fortress last season, as only Crystal Palace left Manchester City’s home with points – thanks to a 3-2 win on December 22 – 288 days ago. And it’s fair to say this played its part in City’s title win.

But this season Man City have already dropped five points in four games at home, first drawing with Tottenham Hotspur before Sunday’s 2-0 defeat at the hands of Wolves.

It was the first time Man City have lost a Premier League game at the Etihad without scoring since March 2016, when Manchester United left as 1-0 winners.

6. City give Liverpool chance to write over history

Although Man City were excellent in winning the Premier League title last season, a lot of focus was on Liverpool’s lost lead at the top of the table.

Towards the end of 2018, the Reds had a seven-point lead over Manchester City – when both teams had played the same amount of games.

But that gap is already eight this season, after eight matches, and Liverpool do not look likely dropping points at the minute – give their perfect record in the Premier League thus far.

7. Another average game for Pepe

Yes, Nicolas Pepe might have got an assist for Luiz’s winner, but it was the only chance he created on Sunday. And it came in the ninth minute.

There’s no denying the talent is there, but it was another average afternoon in the Premier League for the Ivorian, who just hasn’t lived up to the expectations that come with a £72million move to date.

And again, Pepe was taken off despite the game still being open, with teenager Gabriel Martinelli replacing him after 63 minutes.

This is by no means a disaster, but Pepe does need to step it up a bit if he is to justify his price tag. Time is still on his side, but questions are starting to be asked.