Fernandinho an 8/10 as Man City beat Everton to go top of the table
LIVERPOOL, England -- Manchester City moved back to the top of the Premier League with a nervy 2-0 victory over Everton at Goodison Park. Aymeric Laporte got the opener on the stroke of half-time when he powered in David Silva's free kick before Gabriel Jesus added a second deep in injury time.
Pep Guardiola wants to lead from the front and he will be delighted to have edged back to the top for the first time in two months. While Liverpool have a game in hand, being second in the table cranks up more pressure on Jurgen Klopp's side after their back-to-back draws. But it will also be a huge confidence for City, who looked a long way off the pace just seven days ago when they lost to Newcastle United.
Guardiola warned that the title race could come down to goal difference, and he will be slightly frustrated by their lack of ruthlessness. Laporte and Ilkay Gundogan both missed good opportunities before the opening goal, while they should have extended their lead in the second half.
7 -- The City boss had obviously done his homework over the home side's inability to defend from dead-ball situations in recent weeks as Laporte's opener came from David Silva's delightful free kick. It was the decisive moment of the match against Everton's stubborn defence.
GK Ederson, 6 -- A quiet evening with only sporadic attacks from the home side but one key interception in the last 10 minutes.
DF Kyle Walker, 5 -- Had a few problems from winger Bernard, including losing a back-post header to the tiny Brazilian.
DF John Stones, 7 -- Stepped into a hybrid holding position as he tried to provide an extra man in midfield against a dogged home side.
DF Nicolas Otamendi, 6 -- Short of composure on the ball and lost a couple of aerial challenges to Dominic Calvert-Lewin, but dug deep to keep a clean sheet.
DF Aymeric Laporte, 6 -- Back at left-back and didn't look overly comfortable with or without the ball, but got the crucial breakthrough.
MF Fernandinho, 8 -- Pushed further forward into midfield and largely controlled the game.
MF David Silva, 7 -- Dovetailed expertly with Leroy Sane as City caused problems down the left-hand side.
MF Ilkay Gundogan, 7 -- Unlucky not to score with a close-range shot onto the bar as he got into good positions.
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FW Bernardo Silva, 7 -- Lively as ever and came more into the game on the right wing as it went on.
FW Sergio Aguero, 6 -- Worked hard and was narrowly off target with an overhead kick.
FW Leroy Sane, 7 -- City's biggest attacking threat in the first half by holding his position out wide, but caught offside too many times.
FW Raheem Sterling, 6 -- A big threat as the game became stretched but couldn't find a second goal.
FW Gabriel Jesus, N/R -- Bundled in the second goal to kill off the game.
MF Kevin De Bruyne, N/R -- Very late change to run down the clock.