Manchester City Stoke City BBC Sport

“Manchester City had scored in every home game this season before Stoke’s visit to the Etihad
Manchester City’s title hopes suffered a potentially-decisive blow after they were held by a resolute Stoke side and missed the chance to cut Chelsea’s lead at the top of the table.
A win for City would have moved them above Tottenham and into second place but they could not find the attacking spark required to break down a well-drilled Potters side.
City boss Pep Guardiola had said before kick-off that his team could not afford any more slip-ups in their pursuit of the leaders, who remain 10 points clear of the chasing pack with 11 games left.
Guardiola’s side were sluggish before the break and, although they improved when David Silva came off the bench in the second half, he could not make the difference.
Silva had City’s best effort when he drilled a low shot a fraction wide after a one-two with Fernandinho but, despite a flurry of late chances, Stoke keeper Lee Grant’s only save came from a first-half free-kick by Aleksandar Kolarov.
City’s big week starts badly
Pep Guardiola’s Man City take on Middlesbrough in the FA Cup quarter-finals
City are still, in theory at least, chasing silverware on three fronts and head to Middlesbrough in the FA Cup on Saturday before travelling to Monaco in the Champions League on Wednesday.
It is a pivotal week in Pep Guardiola’s first season in English football, but this result means it has started in frustrating fashion.
The attacking verve that had carried City to four straight league wins and seen them hit five goals past Monaco and Huddersfield in the last month was, initially, nowhere to be seen.”

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