Manchester City’s incredible record breaking winning streak has finally come to an end with a 0-0 draw against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
In saying this, it could have been much worse for Pep Guardiola’s side as it took a last-gasp penalty save from goalkeeper Ederson to maintain the league leaders’ unbeaten start to the Premier League.
Now, at the halfway point of the season as the calendar turns to 2018, City have drawn just twice since the season kicked-off, remarkably winning the other 19 fixtures, including 18 in-a-row until today.
The result leaves a 14-point gap at the top of the table with defending champions Chelsea trailing behind in second and Jose Mourinho’s stuttering Manchester United a further point behind in third.
Wilfried Zaha dribbled past the Man City defence in the dying moments before being brought down by Raheem Sterling for a penalty kick, gifting a wonderful opportunity to Palace to be the first team to defeat this all-conquering Guardiola outfit this season. However, a relatively tame effort from Luka Milivojević was kept out by City’s Brazilian ‘keeper.
The game was somewhat marred by injuries sustained by City’s Gabriel Jesus and Kevin de Bruyne which will come as some cause for concern for Pep and the Etihad faithful alike. De Bruyne, in particular, has been simply outstanding for City under Guardiola and is an early standout contender for PFA Player Of The Year, along with fellow maestro and colleague David Silva.
— eir Sport (@eirSport) December 31, 2017
City will hope both injuries are not as serious as first feared. While scans will provide further details and allow a proper diagnosis, Pep did comment on Jesus’ issue after the attacker slipped awkwardly putting his knee in a seriously strenuous looking position.
#Breaking Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus could be out for two months because of a suspected knee injury suffered in the draw at Crystal Palace, manager Pep Guardiola told BT Sport#MCFC pic.twitter.com/XKsz7FNOMk
— PA Dugout (@PAdugout) December 31, 2017
Will lengthy stints on the sidelines for the aforementioned pair open the door for Alexis Sanchez, who is strongly linked with a move to City, to join up with the club this January transfer window?
Even more intriguing to see, will it allow the chasing pack of Chelsea, United, Liverpool and Spurs to close the gap and make a genuine title race out of the second-half of this season?