EPL: Manchester City held at Nottingham Forest as Arsenal reclaim top spot

Sun, Feb 19, 2023
By editor


MANCHESTER City fell two points behind English Premier League (EPL) leaders Arsenal after being held to a 1-1 draw at Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Arsenal left it very late to beat Aston Villa 4-2 earlier on Saturday and climbed back to the top of the standings, putting pressure on City to earn victory at Forest, with the visitors starting the encounter at a blistering pace.

City dominated possession and deservedly took the lead four minutes before the break with Bernardo Silva slamming the ball into the net from the edge of the box.

The visitors should have doubled their advantage midway through the second half but the usually lethal Erling Haaland hit the crossbar from close range before blazing the rebound over the top.

That miss proved pivotal as, out of nowhere, Forest’s January signing Chris Wood tapped home at the far post to level up six minutes from time and lift the roof off a damp City Ground.

City eventually came out in full force in search of a dramatic late winner but they could not break the hosts’ resistance, leaving City two points behind Arsenal having played one game more, while Forest climbed to 13th place.

“It is one of the best games we have played but we dropped two points; we should be more aggressive. There are many games still to play, we know it.

“We had amazing chances but it’s football. We have to score. We did everything. You have to do it. There were too many clear chances to score,” City coach Pep Guardiola said.

City beat Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday to drag themselves back to the top of the standings after having trailed the Londoners for much of the season.

Victory over Forest, whom they beat 6-0 in the reverse fixture earlier in the season, was expected, with the only downside in an impressive first-half display being that City were unable to score more than once to make their dominance count.

Elsewhere, Liverpool ended the unbeaten record on Newcastle United with a 2-0 win at St. James Park.

Liverpool were clinical in the first half and they quickly grabbed their two goals courtesy of Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo in the 10th and 17th minutes respectively.

Newcastle, despite being down to 10 men, were the better side in the second period until the last few minutes when Liverpool should have capitalised on the Toon’s lack of energy and scored more.

Goalkeeper Nick Pope was sent off having kept 12 clean sheets in the Premier League this season for the Toon after a red card in the first half, for a handball outside his area.

In other encounters, Bournemouth defeated Wolves 1-0 away, Crystal Palace and Brentford ended paly 1-1, Everton pipped Leeds United 1-0, Fulham edged Brighton 1-0, while Chelsea lost at home 0-1 to Southampton. (Reuters/NAN)