Middlesbrough snatch injury-time draw at Manchester City

Middlesbrough snatch injury-time draw at Manchester City
Middlesbrough celebrate beating Manchester City in their last clash | Photo: Alex Livesey/Getty/Zimbio
Manchester City
1 1
Middlesbrough
Manchester City: Bravo; Zabaleta, Stones, Kolarov, Clichy; Fernandinho, Gundogan (Nolito, min. 74); Silva, De Bruyne, Navas (Garcia, min. 86); Aguero (Iheanacho, min. 90).
Middlesbrough: Valdes; Barragan, Chambers, Gibson, Friend; Clayton, de Roon, Forshaw; Traore (Stuani, min. 90+3), Downing (Fischer, min. 78); Negredo.
SCORE: 1-0, min. 43, Aguero. 1-1, min. 90, de Roon.
REFEREE: Kevin Friend (ENG). Booked: Forshaw (min. 20), Clayton (min. 52), Aguero (min. 88).

Well. What looked like being a quiet Saturday in the Premier League has had last-minute drama in a couple of games and a clean sheet in none of them. Everton and Chelsea are up next this evening in another game which looks to have some goals in it but that's it from me today - I've been Sam France, and I hope you've enjoyed this as much as I have. Cheers!

And the scores from elsewhere...

Bournemouth 1-2 Sunderland
Burnley 3-2 Crystal Palace
West Ham 1-1 Stoke City

Wow! Where did that come from? City should have been five up at half time, Boro came back in the second half but the game looked dead. 150th City goal for Aguero, first Boro goal for de Roon. 

Full-time: Manchester City 1-1 Middlesbrough

90+3' Stuani is on for Traore as Karanka looks to wind down the clock. Nolito's shot looks to be out for a corner, but he's offside.

90+3' The away fans are going absolutely crackers here, as well they should - can they hold out for the final 60 seconds?

90' George Friend whips in a stunning cross from the left, Negredo can't quite get there but Marten de Roon is there at the back post to power a header past Bravo!

GOOOOOOOOALLLLLL! BORO ARE LEVEL!

90' Final City sub, Kelechi Iheanacho coming on for the man whose goal looks to have decided this game. Four minutes for Boro to change that, four minutes for City to hold on.

89' De Bruyne has a chance to put the game to bed as Valdes comes out and misses the ball compeltely, but the Belgian can't keep his first-time shot at the edge of the area down and it flies over.

88' Chambers does well to shepherd Aguero off the ball at the edge of the area and carry the ball out of defence, before Boro get a free kick and Aguero gets a yellow for a cynical foul on the escaping Forshaw.

86' Jesus Navas is coming off for City after a good performance on the right, with youngster Aleix Garcia coming on for the last five minutes.

85' Aguero should finish the game off here, he's got acres of space inside the area but his first touch isn't great and he lifts his shot high and wide.

84' Fischer runs at the City defence down the left for the first time since his introduction, before cutting inside and trying to find Negredo in the centre - Stones steps in to make a crucial interception.

82' Traore hooks in a cross from the left but it's just too heavy for Negredo to get a telling touch at the back post. City keep it in on the far touchline and their fans urge a counter, but they're happy to keep hold of the ball as Boro get numbers back well once more.

81' De Bruyne and Friend both go up for a long ball into the area but it's over both of them and the Belgian goes down under a little nudge - nothing really in it and some faint calls for a penalty are waved away.

79' Crystal Palace have clawed their way back to 2-2 at Burnley, Christian Benteke converting a penalty.

78' Boro make their first change, a straight swap with Fischer coming on to replace Downing on the left.

77' Negredo gets the ball in space down the right and puts in a good low cross which Stones just gets a foot to with the excellent Adam Forshaw lurking with intent behind him.

76' Fernandinho presumably gets a call from somebody in the crowd behind the goal, passing it to nobody in particular and out for a goal kick. Strange.

74' First substitution of the game, and it's Gundogan who makes way for Nolito.

74' Boro have a bit of a break on after a good challenge from de Roon on the halfway line and Downing fizzes the ball in from the left - not obvious whether it's a shot or a cross, but either way it goes across goal and wide.

72' There's a bit of a lull in the game here for the first real time this afternoon, and Pep is going to try and remedy that with the introduction of Nolito. Will Aitor Karanka gamble with one of David Nugent, Cristhian Stuani or Viktor Fischer?

70' And another, as ten-man Sunderland take the lead at Bournemouth thanks to a Jermain Defoe penalty. Is a first win of the season on the cards for David Moyes' men?

69' Another goal from elsewhere, Michail Antonio opening the scoring for West Ham at home to Stoke.

68' De Bruyne loops a ball into Aguero at the edge of the six-yard box. The Argentine manages to find space between the two centre-halves but his header flies high over the crossbar.

67' There's some good noise being made by the travelling fans, who clearly still believe their side have a chance in this game. The first 15 minutes of the second half would suggest that is true, but they've been pegged back by the hosts for the last five.

65' De Bruyne's cross from the left finds its way to Gundogan at the edge of the area and it sits up nicely for a half-volley, but he doesn't catch it right and it bounces wide of the left post.

63' Silva plays a swerving pass across the area from the right and De Bruyne meets it with his head, but his effort at goal lacks power and it's a simple catch for Valdes.

61' Aguero breaks past about five Boro defenders, but Clayton eventually gets back to make a challenge. He'd fouled him a good six times before then, but the advantage was played and eventually the free kick goes the other way as Aguero fouls him back.

59' The corner is taken short and pulled back for a shot from the edge of the area from Downing. It's charged down and looks to be dribbling out for a corner, but Clayton tries to keep it in and is flagged offside.

58' Kolarov gets back well to force the ball out for a Boro corner on the right after Traore threatened to break clear. Elsewhere, Connor Wickham has got a goal back for Crystal Palace at Burnley. 2-1 to the Clarets now.

57' Looks like another chance for Negredo as he breaks free from Forshaw's slide-rule pass, but his chip drifts just wide. It doesn't matter, though, as he's pulled back for offside. A replay shows that the Spaniard was level with the last man, but he seems to enjoy the smattering round of "Beast" from sections of the home support.

56' Middlesbrough are furious as Negredo picks up the ball halfway into the City half and starts to run at the defence, but referee Kevin Friend pulls it back for a foul on Boro midfielder de Roon. They'd much rather have had the advantage, and the free kick comes to nothing.

No further goals in the second halves of the other games in the Premier League today, but Sunderland are down to ten men at Bournemouth. Steven Pienaar has just been sent off for the Black Cats after a second bookable offence.

54' De Bruyne does the unthinkable and gets a pass wrong. Badly wrong too, as his first-time cross balloons up in the air and floats out of play for a goal kick.

52' Adam Clayton, formerly of City, sees the second yellow card of the game after a very late tackle on Silva.

52' Adama Traore is going to get his side in trouble doing this at some point, but he robs the ball from Aguero inside his own half before beating three City midfielders, pirouetting between two and winning a free kick. He is an entertainer to say the least.

50' Boro are on top in the second half! Traore feeds Forshaw, making a great run into the area, and he has their best chance of the game but Bravo smothers his close-range shot.

49' Clayton spreads a diagonal pass over the defence for Downing to chase down the left and it looks for a moment as if he might just get to it, but Zabaleta wins the foot race and heads it back to Bravo.

48' Forshaw looks to bundle his way through the home defence and Stones is forced to hoik the ball out for a throw which eventually comes to nothing.

47' Wow! Boro have their first shot of the game out of absolutely nowhere, Negredo picks up the ball on the centre spot and goes straight for goal from the halfway line. It's drifting into the top corner but Bravo backpedals just quickly enough to tip it over for a corner.

46' City get the second half underway and are straight on the attack, so normal service resumed there. George Friend wins the ball from Zabaleta on the left and knocks it between the legs of Navas, which gets a cheer from the away fans, but he loses the ball immediately after.

The teams are back out ready for the second half - the main news is that Victor Valdes is to continue despite that nasty injury in the first half. Stoic.

Aguero is within 27 goals of the all-time goalscoring record for Manchester City now. Today's finish was his 150th in just 223 appearances - that's a frankly stupid 0.67 goals/game ratio.

The visiting defensive rearguard has been impressive, but it says a lot about City's quality that they could have had five regardless. If they do start finding their shooting boots, it doesn't look likely that Boro will get a consolation for their travelling fans - they haven't had a shot yet, and their star attacker Traore has been completely shackled.

Boro fans take heart - at this point in midweek, Barcelona were only one goal better off against City. The visitors have a lot to thank Victor Valdes for so far - he's had a cracking game.

The scores on the doors around the Premier League at half-time:

Bournemouth 1-1 Sunderland (Gosling 11', Anichebe 33')
Burnley 2-0 Crystal Palace (Vokes 2', Gudmunsson 14')
West Ham 0-0 Stoke City

Half-time: Manchester City 1-0 Middlesbrough

47' The last chance of the half comes to Navas, who fires a rasping drive towards the top corner from an acute angle but it cannons away off the post. 

45' Two minutes of added time at the end of the first half. Boro look to press forward down the right but they can't string a number of passes together and it breaks down.

De Bruyne is given a lot of space on the right wing and he delivers a stunning ball into the area, around the defence and onto the line of the six-yard box where Aguero gets ahead of his man to poke it into the bottom right. Will the floodgates open?

43' GOAL! City take the lead, De Bruyne and Aguero combine beautifully!

43' Or not - Silva delivers the set-piece into the area but it's headed away once more. 

42' Barragan blocks De Bruyne at the edge of the area off the ball, and City get a free kick around the left corner of the penalty area. De Bruyne to take again.

40' That is a nasty wound. There isn't a load of blood but it is deep, you can see where the stud has gone straight into his thigh. Brad Guzan is warming up on the touchline for the visitors but it looks as though Valdes will soldier on until half-time at least.

38' Fernandinho looks to find Navas with a searching cross-field pass which Valdes does well to come out and smother, getting a nasty gash on his leg in the process as he collides with the winger. He wants the ball putting out so he can have some treatment, but City aren't obliging - eventually they get a corner and there's a break in play as the physio comes on to take a look. 

36' Boro have their second attack of the game but Traore's cross from the left floats over Forshaw in the area and it's cleared away. City look to counter but Boro get bodies back inside their own half quickly and smother the chance.

34' De Roon and Forshaw combine well to rob the ball from Silva at the edge of the area but City keep the pressure on and the ball eventually comes to Silva again but Valdes makes another excellent save. Another corner. City win the header but it's a simple save for Valdes this time.

32' Sunderland have equalised at Bournemouth, with City continuing to apply all the pressure here. Aguero wins a corner from another shot in a similar position to the last, and this time Boro don't clear it away. Stones' flick-on just evades Aguero at the back post.

31' Great save from Victor Valdes! Aguero gets the ball in the centre of the penalty area and fires a powerful shot at goal which Valdes gets in the way of - he saves Silva's follow-up effort as well, but the Spaniard was offside.

29' A mix-up out of nowhere in the Boro defence almost gifts Aguero a gilt-edged opportunity for his 150th City goal, but he's forced out wide and the ball goes out for yet another corner. Again, it comes to nothing - Boro have dealt with set pieces well so far.

27' Middlesbrough have an attack! They almost win a corner too, as Clayton battles with Stones, but the defender holds off the challenge of the former City man to marshal the ball out for a goal kick. Welcome respite for the visiting defence.

26' Downing intercepts a pass towards Navas but it deflects perfectly into the path of Aguero. He immediately goes for goal, but it's straight at Valdes once more.

25' Another offside call against Navas down the right. City are having to work for this one, as many predicted they would - surely Boro can't keep this up for 90 minutes, though.

24' City get in behind the Boro defence for the first real time and De Bruyne goes for goal just inside the area, but he pulls his shot across goal and just wide of the far post. 

23' City are being held at arm's length by Middlesbrough so far, and De Bruyne elects to have a go from range. He wins a corner, from which Kolarov also has a pop from the edge of the area. It's well-struck, but hit centrally and Valdes can reach up to pluck it out of the sky.

21' Zabaleta feeds the ball in towards Navas at the right corner of the penalty area, but Friend gets across to intercept and clear. That's George Friend, not Kevin. 

20' Forshaw collides with Zabaleta near the half-way line, and he gets the first yellow card of the game from Kevin Friend.

19' It looks like a moment of panic for Boro as Navas escapes the attentions of Friend down the right and manages to fizz the ball back into a dangerous area, but he's correctly pulled back for offside.

17' Boro get a free kick inside their own half, and they have a couple of moments to take a breather and get their foot on the ball. Make the most of it, lads.

15' A decent opportunity for Gundogan as Navas lifts a ball in towards him in the area. He goes for the spectacular, stretching his foot high to hook a volley towards goal, but he doesn't connect well and it bounces wide.

14' Fernandinho has a pop from range, but his rasping drive flies wide of Valdes left-hand post.

12' De Bruyne goes for power but it clips off the top of the wall and bounces out for City's third corner of the game. De Bruyne delivers from the right and it's headed clear again, before Gundogan's shot cannons off a defender into the grateful arms of Valdes. Elsewhere, Burnley are 2-0 up already against Crystal Palace and Bournemouth lead 1-0 against Sunderland.

11' Free kick in a good central position for City here as de Roon catches Fernandinho late. This is easily within scoring range for de Bruyne.

8' Gundogan's sharp pull-back from the left-hand side of the penalty area is gathered by Valdes. Pep Guardiola was full of praise for his former keeper before the game, and it looks like he'll be in for a busy afternoon here today.

7' Navas and Silva look to combine down the right but Friend gets a foot in and his left-wing partner Downing completes the clearance. Looking like about 95% possession for City so far.

6' A second corner of the game for City, on the other side this time. De Bruyne takes and it's headed well clear by Gibson.

5' Traore looks to be outnumbered in his own half but he bustles his way through a crowd of two or three players and carries it clear of danger. 

3' Nothing comes from the corner, but the ball keeps finding its way to a City foot as they apply the early pressure. A dangerous low ball comes in from de Bruyne on the right, but it evades the outstretched foot of Aguero and Valdes gets down well to smother it.

2' Early corner on the left-hand side for City after Adama Traore loses the ball in his own half. David Silva to take.

1' Boro get the game underway, Negredo winning an early flick on from Friend's ball forward but it goes all the way through to Bravo in the City goal.

A well-observed minute's silence, and kick-off is coming right up. Don't go anywhere.

We're about to have a rendition of the Last Post before a minute's silence for Remembrance Day, this coming Friday.

Five minutes to kick-off, the teams are in the tunnel and about to make their way out.

We'll keep an eye on the scores elsewhere today. For a quick reminder, those games are:
Bournemouth vs Sunderland
Burnley vs Crystal Palace
West Ham vs Stoke
In a pretty slow day of Premier League football. Chelsea host Everton in the late kick-off.

Alvaro Negredo gets a nice reception from the City fans, which is good to see. Hard to imagine they'll be so welcoming if he gets a goal or two today.

The Middlesbrough VAVEL Twitter account (@Boro_VAVEL) have a poll out predicting the result today, and it's thrown up an away win or a draw as the two most popular results. We have to imagine that isn't wholly representative of the footballing population.

Boro look to have gone for the same system which saw them earn a draw at Arsenal two weeks ago. Adama Traore looks the key man but they need their three central midfielders to get a foot on the ball if they are to avoid being overwhelmed by the might of City's superstars.

No Yaya Toure to be seen today, despite his apology for his recent antics. No Raheem Sterling for them either.

No early kick-off in the Premier League today, but Derby have just beaten Wolves in the early kick-off in the Championship. A 3-2 victory in a cracking game at Molineux for them.

40 minutes until kick-off, both sides have been out to have a look at the pitch. Some fans starting to arrive here and there.

According to @OptaJoe on Twitter, Manchester City are Middlesbrough's favourite opponents. They've won 11 Premier League games against City, more than against any other side.

De Roon in for the suspended Ramirez is the only change for the visitors, meanwhile, for whom Negredo makes his first return to the Etihad. The Beast's form has been difficult to analyse this season, hapless in front of goal but a useful outlet in supplying them. Will he find the net today?

A strong starting eleven for the hosts, then, so you'd imagine they'll be looking for a big scoreline today. Will there be a European hangover?

City come in just seconds behind! Manchester City XI: Bravo; Zabaleta, Stones, Kolarov, Clichy; Fernandinho, Gundogan; Silva, De Bruyne, Navas; Aguero. Subs: Caballero, Kompany, Maffeo, Garcia, Nolito, Iheanacho, Sane.

Boro take the point! Middlesbrough XI: Valdes; Barragan, Chambers, Gibson, Friend; Clayton, de Roon, Forshaw; Traore, Downing; Negredo. Subs: Guzan, Espinosa, Fabio, Leadbitter, Fischer, Stuani, Nugent.

More importantly, which side will release their team news the most promptly, thus winning the support of minute-by-minute commentators the world over? We'll surely have an answer within the next couple of minutes.

So, just over an hour until kick-off in the Danny Mills Derby and we should have team news very shortly. Who's your money on? Answers on a postcard...

Meanwhile, Pep has also said that he respects the work his opposite number Aitor Karanka has done at Middlesbrough - though the two are not close friends. "When we were football players he played against us and after he was assistant coach at Real Madrid, and that's all," Guardiola said. "We don't meet or chat too much. I respect a lot what he has done here in England with Middlesbrough because I know how difficult it must be to go from the Championship to the Premier League. He has done really well."

Pep Guardiola will be reunited with former goalkeeper Victor Valdes, who is now at Middlesbrough after spending four years with the Spaniard at Barcelona"He's one of the best goalkeepers," Guardiola said. "I'm very happy that he was returned to his level. He didn't deserve to finish his career with all the injuries he had in the past. Our success at FC Barcelona wouldn't have happened without him. He was always there in the important moments."

Meanwhile, Middlesbrough's big summer signing Alvaro Negredo has said he is open to the option of making his current loan deal at the club permanent. "It is an option, certainly," he told the Sun. "I am definitely going to be putting down more personal roots here, because my next child is going to be born in this area."

Ilkay Gundogan has been in inspired form in recent weeks, but he told mancity.com that the best is yet to come. “If you look at just my goals record, you’d have to say this is the best spell of my career,” he said. “But I think I can improve my performances over the next few weeks – I’m still not playing at 100% because it does take time after being out of action for so long.”

Middlesbrough are boosted by the return to fitness of captain Grant Leadbitter in midfield, where he will compete with Marten de RoonAdam Clayton and Adam Forshaw for a midfield starting spot. Dani Ayala's troublesome ankle keeps him out of action, while playmaker Gaston Ramirez is suspended after scoring a contender for goal of the season against Bournemouth last weekend.

In terms of early team news, City keeper Claudio Bravo should return after suspension while Yaya Toure could be back in contention after issuing an apology to the club. Bacary Sagna and Fabian Delph are also out.

The recent few games between the two have been pretty even as well. Last time out, goals from Patrick Bamford and Kike saw Boro, then of the Championship, claim a famous away victory in the FA Cup, while the previous four games saw two victories apiece - including Middlesbrough's infamous 8-1 victory at the Riverside.

There may be a huge gulf between these two sides now, but their overall record against each other is remarkably even. City have 50 wins in all competitions to Middlesbrough's 49, while there have been 27 draws.

Despite City being top of the league but with just a single point between themselves and the rest of the top four, upcoming fixtures seem to suggest that this game is more important for the visitors than themselves. City will be expecting to take six points from their next two games against Crystal Palace and Burnley, but with Boro facing Chelsea and Leicester City in their next fixtures, they will need to find points from somewhere.

Likewise, Boro were slipping down towards the relegation zone but four points from their last two games, and improved performances to with them, have seen them rise back up to 15th with a three-point buffer between themselves and the bottom three.

Both sides come into this game on a slight upturn of form. After a career record-breaking run of six games without a win, Pep Guardiola has now overseen two wins and seven goals in the last week.

So, the vanquishers of Barcelona play host to the vanquishers of Bournemouth - an open-and-shut affair? Perhaps not. City have struggled in recent games after spending midweek in the Champions League, and Boro could have taken all three points from their draw at Arsenal last month.

Hello and welcome to VAVEL UK's coverage of Manchester City vs Middlesbrough in the 2016/17 Premier League. We'll have all the build-up, minute-by-minute coverage and analysis throughout the day as well as scores from elsewhere, so stay with us for all the action!