Man City overcome stubborn Brighton | 234Radio

Man City overcome stubborn Brighton

Aguero

Premier League title favourites Manchester City had to wait to break down promoted Brighton before two late goals gave them victory on the south coast.

The Seagulls, back in the top flight after a 34-year absence, had showed impressive organisation and resolve to keep City at bay until David Silva played in Sergio Aguero to fire home after 70 minutes.

Lewis Dunk headed Fernandinho’s cross into his own net five minutes to make sure of the points for Pep Guardiola’s new-look side.

Brighton, who had less than 25% of possession, spent most of the game defending in their own half but had chances with the score at 0-0.

Shane Duffy had a shot deflected just wide and, after City’s new £35m goalkeeper Ederson flapped at the resulting corner, Dunk had two shots blocked in quick succession.

That was as much of a test as City’s backline got, and they never looked in serious danger of suffering an opening weekend upset in the manner of some of their title rivals.

This was was more of a test of whether Guardiola’s rebooted team could break down a massed defence. They did not do it enough in his first season at City but at the Amex Stadium, eventually, they found a way through.

City not making most of new width

Kyle Walker

New personnel meant a change to a 3-1-4-2 formation for Guardiola, something he tried during his side’s recent tour of the United States.

It was hard to gauge an accurate impression of City’s new shape because Brighton sat so deep in their own half and saw so little of the ball.

Even so, the signs are that City are still adjusting to it themselves.

Kyle Walker and Danilo, signed for a combined £68m over the summer, did exactly what they were supposed to do as wing-backs – constantly getting forward and overlapping down the outside.

All too often, though, their runs were ignored and City played the ball inside, where space was limited, before attacks broke down.

Width was the way forward for City, however, and moves along the right flank provided both their goals.

Dale Stephens’ mistake allowed Walker to start the attack that led to Aguero scoring, while Fernandinho provided the cross that Dunk put into his own net.

Cautious Brighton unable to shine

A rousing atmosphere greeted the Brighton players at a packed stadium but Chris Hughton’s side, which included five new signings, had little opportunity to show what they could do.

It was just their discipline and work-rate on show for the first hour or so, when they often had 10 men behind the ball.

Up front, Tomer Hemed and Pascal Gross had a thankless task of chasing and harrying, without a sight of goal.

That second-half spell, when City wobbled but held out under pressure, perhaps showed what might have been possible had Brighton showed more ambition on their big day against a side playing a new system.

Chris Hughton’s cautious approach came within 20 minutes of earning a point against a team with much greater talent and resources but could not quite get the job done – in the end it was City who did that.

Man of the match – Sergio Aguero (Man City)

Sergio Aguero

‘It was always going to be difficult’ – what the managers said

Brighton manager Chris Hughton: “It is disappointing but that is the quality Manchester City have got and we know that.

“We can take a lot of positives from the game. When you are playing Champions League-quality teams, you know that they can hurt you. It was always going to be difficult for us to score.

“We have to make sure that come the end of the window, we have a squad that can do well enough in this division. We have to win the games that we can do.

“The fans have been absolutely brilliant in my time here and I think they are realistic. They will certainly be behind us. It is a wonderful place to be and a wonderful place to play.”

What next?

Brighton are away at Leicester next Saturday (15:00 BST) then go to Watford the following weekend. Their next home league game is not until 9 September, when West Brom are the visitors.

City’s first home game of the new season is against Everton on Monday 21 August (20:00) before they return to the south coast to play Bournemouth the following weekend.

Line-ups

Brighton

  • 1Ryan
  • 2Bruno
  • 22Duffy
  • 5Dunk
  • 29Suttner
  • 20MarchSubstituted forKnockaertat 77′minutes
  • 6Stephens
  • 24Pröpper
  • 37BrownSubstituted forMurphyat 24′minutes
  • 13Groß
  • 10HemedSubstituted forMurrayat 60′minutes

Substitutes

  • 4Hünemeier
  • 11Knockaert
  • 12Mäenpää
  • 14Sidwell
  • 15Murphy
  • 17Murray
  • 23Rosenior

Man City

  • 31Santana de Moraes
  • 4Kompany
  • 5Stones
  • 30Otamendi
  • 25Fernandinho
  • 2Walker
  • 17De Bruyne
  • 21Silva
  • 3DaniloSubstituted forSanéat 68′minutes
  • 10AgüeroSubstituted forBernardo Silvaat 83′minutes
  • 33de JesusBooked at 29minsSubstituted forSterlingat 78′minutesBooked at 82mins

Substitutes

  • 1Bravo
  • 7Sterling
  • 15Mangala
  • 19Sané
  • 20Bernardo Silva
  • 42Y Touré
  • 47Foden
Referee:
Michael Oliver
Attendance:
30,415

Match Stats

Home TeamBrightonAway TeamMan City
Possession
Home22%
Away78%
Shots
Home6
Away14
Shots on Target
Home2
Away4
Corners
Home3
Away10
Fouls
Home6
Away9

Live Text

Match ends, Brighton and Hove Albion 0, Manchester City 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Brighton and Hove Albion 0, Manchester City 2.

David Silva (Manchester City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Corner, Manchester City. Conceded by Markus Suttner.

Foul by Leroy Sané (Manchester City).

Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Manchester City. Bernardo Silva replaces Sergio Agüero.

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Pascal Groß tries a through ball, but Glenn Murray is caught offside.

Booking

Raheem Sterling (Manchester City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Raheem Sterling (Manchester City).

Glenn Murray (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Fernandinho.

Foul by Leroy Sané (Manchester City).

Anthony Knockaert (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Sergio Agüero (Manchester City).

Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Manchester City. Raheem Sterling replaces Gabriel Jesus.

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Bruno tries a through ball, but Pascal Groß is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Anthony Knockaert replaces Solly March.

Goal!

Own Goal by Lewis Dunk, Brighton and Hove Albion. Brighton and Hove Albion 0, Manchester City 2.

Corner, Manchester City. Conceded by Solly March.

Kyle Walker (Manchester City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Jamie Murphy (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Goal!

Goal! Brighton and Hove Albion 0, Manchester City 1. Sergio Agüero (Manchester City) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by David Silva.

Substitution

Substitution, Manchester City. Leroy Sané replaces Danilo.

.

Corner, Manchester City. Conceded by Lewis Dunk.

Attempt blocked. Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Kyle Walker.

Corner, Manchester City. Conceded by Davy Pröpper.

Corner, Manchester City. Conceded by Lewis Dunk.

Fernandinho (Manchester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Glenn Murray (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Substitution

Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Glenn Murray replaces Tomer Hemed.

Attempt blocked. Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by David Silva.

Attempt missed. Davy Pröpper (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left following a corner.

Attempt blocked. Lewis Dunk (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt saved. Lewis Dunk (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Vincent Kompany.

Attempt blocked. Shane Duffy (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Lewis Dunk with a headed pass.

goal

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Source: BBC

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