Sports Desk, Dec 22 (EFE).- Manchester City edged Liverpool 3-2 Thursday to eliminate the Carabao Cup holders and advance to the quarterfinals of a competition Pep Guardiola’s men have won on five occasions in the last seven years.
City had 57 percent possession at the Etihad and put nine shots on target to just two for the visitors, but the Reds exploited their handful of chances to make it a contest.
Though both teams had players at the World Cup, neither squad showed any signs of rust in the return to competitive play after the extra-long international break.
And the intense rivalry between the two clubs that have stood head-and-shoulders above the rest of the Premier League since 2017 – City with four titles and Liverpool with one – remains undiminished.
After squandering a chance in the second minute, Erling Haaland opened the scoring for City in the 10th, assisted by Kevin de Bruyne.
The home side seemed fully in control until Fabio Carvalho brought Liverpool level in the 20th minute with an assist from James Milner.
Reds goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher dealt easily with shots from De Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan and defender Nat Phillips stymied Haaland to send the teams to the dressing rooms at the break deadlocked 1-1.
City regained the lead two minutes into the second half with a goal from Riyad Mahrez, only to see Mohamed Salah equalize seconds later with help from Darwin Nuñez.
An extended stretch of end-to-end action culminated in the 58th minute with a goal by Nathan Ake, who got his head to a perfect De Bruyne cross to put City up 3-2 and the home side saw out the match to book their spot in the quarterfinals. EFE apa/dr