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Leeds United 1-1 Manchester City: Rodrigo punishes Ederson gaffe to secure deserved point



Rodrigo capitalised on a bad mistake from Ederson to score his first goal for Leeds United and secure a 1-1 Premier League draw against Manchester City at Elland Road.

City, hammered 5-2 at home by Leicester City last weekend, made a blistering start in driving rain at Elland Road and Raheem Sterling deservedly put them in front.

Leeds grew into a pulsating contest, though, and record signing Rodrigo opened his account for the promoted side soon after coming on when goalkeeper Ederson made a mess of trying to deal with a corner.

Rodrigo also hit the crossbar twice as the Whites continued their impressive start to life in the top tier, although City felt they should have had a late penalty for a challenge on Sterling.

It meant Pep Guardiola and Marcelo Bielsa having to settle for a point apiece in a clash that was billed as the master against the apprentice.

City started with vigour and Kevin De Bruyne almost caught Illan Meslier out with a whipped free-kick from the left that rattled the post when the Leeds goalkeeper was expecting a cross.

New signing Ruben Dias should have marked his City debut with a goal, but nodded a Riyad Mahrez corner wide from close range and Ezgjan Alioski headed over unmarked at the other end.

Stuart Dallas blocked Ferran Torres’ goal-bound shot with Leeds under huge pressure.

And the lively Sterling cut in from the left and found the far corner with a clinical finish 17 minutes in, Torres getting the assist.

City ought to have had breathing space, but they were indebted to Ederson for spreading himself twice to deny Stuart Dallas and Luke Ayling before the break as Leeds warmed to the task on a miserable evening.

It was an error from Ederson that gifted Leeds an equaliser just before the hour-mark, though, the Brazil keeper flapping at a corner and Rodrigo taking advantage of a deflection off Benjamin Mendy’s back to tuck in just a few minutes after coming on.

That corner came after Rodrigo had struck the crossbar with a deflected effort and the substitute was came close again when Ederson tipped his header against the bar with Leeds scenting victory.

Patrick Bamford could have put Leeds front in the closing stages, while City wanted a spot-kick when they felt Liam Cooper brought down Sterling, but neither side could fashion a winner.

What does it mean? Slick City must be more ruthless

City made a great start, causing Leeds all sorts of problems with their high press as Bielsa’s in-form side stuck to their approach of trying to play out from the back.

Sterling gave them a deserved lead and new boy Dias was able to settle in with little to do at the back as City remained on the front foot.

Yet City only found the back of the net only once from 23 shots, with only two of those attempts on target as they felt the absence of injured strikers Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus in an away match reminiscent of many from 2019-20.

Rodrigo and Poveda make their presence felt

Bielsa was like a caged tiger as he prowled around the technical area with City firmly on top for much of the first half.

The wily head coach showed why Guardiola rates him so highly by making the changes that helped Leeds earn a point that was no more than they deserved.

Ian Poveda made an impressive impact against his former club after coming on at the break and Rodrigo could have won it on another day as he showed why Leeds splashed out to bring him back to England, creating two chances in addition to his three attempts on goal.

Ederson gaffe proves costly

Ederson made six saves in what was an excellent performance aside from one costly moment to forget.

He should have dealt with a corner from the left, but could only palm it against Mendy and the loose ball provided a gift for the alert Rodrigo.

Key Opta Stats: Sterling top of the pile

– Sterling has scored more goals than any other Premier League player in all competitions since the start of last season (34).

– Guardiola remains unbeaten in all four of his managerial meetings with Leeds’ Bielsa in all competitions (W2 D2).

– City (D1 L1) have failed to win consecutive Premier League games for the first time since December 2018 (L2).

– They have lost just one of their last 32 Premier League games against promoted sides (W25 D6), with that defeat coming at Norwich City last season.

– Since the start of last season, only Danny Ings (12) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (9) have scored the opening goal in more Premier League games than Sterling (8).

– Rodrigo became the first Spanish player to score for Leeds United in the Premier League, netting just three minutes and six seconds after coming on as a substitute.

What’s next?

City are at home to Arsenal on October 17 after the international break, while Leeds entertain Wolves two weeks on Monday.

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