Monday, 21 September 2020 23:07

 

Photo Credit:Getty Images.

Manchester City held off a second-half Wolves fightback to begin their quest to regain the Premier League title with a win at Molineux.

City did the damage in a superb first half as Professional Footballers' Association Player of the Year Kevin de Bruyne and Phil Foden, playing for the first time since being sent home from England duty in disgrace, both found the net.

At that stage it seemed a case of how many the visitors would get, with Foden and Raheem Sterling both going close and Wolves keeper Rui Patricio making two decent saves.

However, City ran out of steam after the break.

Daniel Podence twice went close for the hosts and Kyle Walker hacked a scuffed Ruben Neves shot off the line, before Raul Jimenez, scorer of 27 goals last season, netted for the second time in this one 12 minutes from time.

However, Wolves were unable to repeat last term's exploits, when they came back from 2-0 down to win this fixture, and Gabriel Jesus' injury-time effort sealed victory for Pep Guardiola's side.

Meanwhile Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan has tested positive for coronavirus.

The 29-year-old is observing a 10-day self-isolation period, the Premier League club confirmed.

"Everyone at the club wishes Ilkay a speedy recovery,"Manchester City said in a statement.

On Monday, the Premier League said that in the week leading up to Sunday, 20 September, 1,574 players and club staff were tested for coronavirus and, of these, there were three new positive cases.

Elsewhere Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder criticised two "major decisions" from officials as Ezri Konsa's second-half header gave Aston Villa victory over the Blades, who played for 78 minutes with 10 men.

Konsa headed in fellow defender Tyrone Mings' flick-on in the 63rd minute after Matt Targett whipped a corner in from the left for the only goal of the game.

But Wilder questioned referee Graham Scott's decisions to send off John Egan early in the game and not show a red a card to Villa's Targett for conceding a penalty, which John Lundstram saw saved by Villa debutant Emiliano Martinez with the score at 0-0.

A lengthy VAR review showed Targett had clipped Chris Basham in the box, but the 'double jeopardy' rule - which means a player cannot be sent off when conceding a penalty if they were making an attempt to win the ball - saw the Villa left-back only pick up a booking.

Egan, however, was dismissed for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity for tussling with Ollie Watkins, who looked to be in on goal in the 12th minute.

"Why didn't the referee go over to the monitor? I wouldn't come out here and mug myself off - if I thought it was a clear sending-off I'd say so," Wilder told Sky Sports.

"Why didn't he go to the monitor? Why didn't Stockley Park [where the VAR officials are based] say 'it's a bit of tussle and look at it yourself'?