Manchester City 3-1 Everton: Jesus brace helps Citizens return to top of Premier League
Gabriel Jesus celebrates giving Manchester City the lead in the first-half. (picture: Getty Images / Tom Flathers)

Manchester City 3-1 Everton: Jesus brace helps Citizens return to top of Premier League

Manchester City saw off Everton at the Etihad Stadium to return to the top of the Premier League. 

Sam Straw
Manchester CityEderson; Walker, Otamendi, Laporte, Delph; Bernardo, Fernandinho, Gündogan; Mahrez (De Bruyne, min. 75), Sané (Sterling, min. 66), Jesus.
Everton FCPickford; Coleman (Walcott, min. 57), Keane, Zouma, Mina, Digne; Calvert-Lewin, Gomes, Sigurdsson (Davies, min. 81), Bernard (Lookman, min. 57); Richarlison.
SCORE1-0, min. 22, Gabriel Jesus. 2-0, min. 50, Gabriel Jesus. 2-1, min. 65, Calvert-Lewin. 3-1, min. 69, Sterling.
INCIDENTSPremier League Match Played At The Etihad Stadium.

Manchester City returned to the top of the Premier League as they comfortably beat Everton 1-0 on Saturday afternoon at the Etihad Stadium

Toffees left to rue early missed chance

Pep Guardiola made a total of four changes for this encounter to keep things fresh following their exploits in midweek. The main point of interest was the fact that both Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero were fit enough for a place on the bench. Raheem Sterling also had to settle for a place on the bench as Riyad Mahrez was given a chance to impress from the start. 

However, despite these changes, the hosts made an unusual sloppy start to the game, with a number of simple passes going astray. Everton had a glorious chance to take the lead early on following a mistake from Kyle Walker but Richarlison could only blaze Lucas Digne's cross over the bar at the back post. 

It took around 20 minutes for City to get going. The home supporters thought they had taken the lead when Michael Keane almost diverted Ilkay Gündogan's cross into his own net. They didn't have to wait much longer for their breakthrough though, as soon after Leroy Sané played a sublime through ball to Gabriel Jesus who slotted home to give the hosts the lead. 

City really started to assert their dominance after taking the lead and it could have been doubled had Jordan Pickford not been alert to prevent Mahrez's volley from finding the back of the net shortly before half-time. 

Sterling makes instant impact

The hosts came out on top again at the start of the second-half as the same Sané and Jesus combination made it 2-0 after 50 minutes, with the Brazilian striker heading Sané's cross beyond the despairing Pickford. 

Despite being dominated for large periods, Everton did get themselves back into the game through Dominic Calvert-Lewin, as his header took a slight knick off Fabian Delph on it's way in. But their hope of securing a result didn't last long, as substitute Sterling made an immediate impact by heading Fernandinho's dinked cross into the back of the net to make it 3-1 with around 70 minutes played. 

Takeaways from the match 

Take your chances against City

City made an extremely poor start to this match by their high standards, but Everton didn't capitalise. David Silva's presence in midfield certainly looked like it was badly missed in the opening exchanges with a number of simple passes going astray. 

Had Richarlison diverted Digne's cross into the back of the net rather than blazing it over the bar, it undoubtedly could have been a very different game. If anything this opportunity seemed to wake the hosts up, as they took the lead shortly afterwards with one of their first major opportunities. You simply have to take any presentable opportunity that comes your way if you want to have any chance of securing a result at the Etihad this season. 

Sané impresses yet again

One topic of debate in the press room in the build-up to kick-off was the amazement that Sané is still just 22-years-old. The former-Schalke 04 forward has started to have a major influence for City again in recent weeks and was the standout performer for Guardiola's side in this afternoon's game.

Sané has now been directly involved in 13 goals for City so far this season in the Premier League, in just 10 starts, having scored six and assisted seven. He has now surely established himself as one of the best players in the division.

Sterling makes his mark

It came as somewhat of a surprise that Sterling had to settle for a place on the bench for this game considering the form he has been in so far this season. However, both Sané and Mahrez more than justified their inclusion in the starting line-up with their performances. 

Sterling did get the opportunity to continue his fine form when he came on with around 25 minutes to play, and this is an opportunity he did not let pass him by. He got on the end of Fernandinho's cross shortly after coming on to ultimately secure the three points for City. He will be hoping that he remains one of Guardiola's first-choice forwards in the coming weeks.