The Manchester derby has always been one of the highly-anticipated matches in the EPL, but Sunday's affair at the Etihad did not have that intensity, which it is known for. However, Manchester United will be mighty pleased with the result as they emerged triumphant against City with Marcus Rashford's brilliant goal.
The first half was a decent one, where the home team were tested a number of times by the Red Devils' offensive players. Rashford, Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard, with their pace, proved to be a huge problem for the City defenders.
They were playing some brilliant counter attacking brand of football, which led to the goal in the 16th minute as well. One has to credit Rashford for getting past Martin Demichelis with ridiculous ease, and finding the back of the net with a great finish.
This goal gave Manchester United further confidence to take on City, who without their best defenders – Vincent Kompany and Nicolas Otamendi – looked all at sea, and especially Demichelis looked below par.
Manchester City suffered a major setback when Raheem Sterling had to be substituted in the 26th minute after the Englishman picked up an injury. However, Manchester City got few chances at goal, and it fell to Jesus Navas, who failed to draw level. The first half was more or less dominated by Manchester United, who used their counter game brilliantly against the weak City defenders.
The second half started on a disastorous note for City with Hart injured in the 47th minute, and had to be substituted. This is not what City manager, Manuel Pellegrini, had in his mind. He, however, had to bring on Willy Caballero.
Despite such setbacks, City were up for it. Sergio Aguero came onto his own in the second half and looked sharp, threatening United. With the hope of providing support to Aguero, Pellegrini also brought in Wilfried Bony. Aguero did come close to goal in the 66th minute as he hit the post with a brilliant header.
Rest of the half was all about City and Aguero, who was trying to shoot from long distance as well. His ambition was the same – equalise for the home team, but he could not do so despite City's dominant display.
Aguero's came close in the 91st minute as Silva played a ball to the striker, who brought the ball down on his chest, but his shot was wide. This could have been a dramatic finish. City had to be content with a loss despite having a major share of the ball in the second half.
Overall, Manchester City should be disappointed with the performance of their offensive players. They had more than 20 efforts on goal, but could not even convert one of them, which is really a shame for City, who have players like Aguero, Yaya Toure, Silva and Bony.