- Raheem Sterling joked with a Manchester City chef on his return to the Etihad
- Pep Guardiola wrote about travel problems in his program notes before the railway chaos
- Jack Grealish has had no luck… now he will be sweating in his Euros place. Podcast Everything is beginning
Chelsea put a dent in Manchester City’s title ambitions by leaving the Etihad with a 1-1 draw on Saturday night.
Raheem Sterling returned to the place where he plied his trade between 2015 and 2022, and kept his celebration quiet after scoring the first goal late in the first half.
Rodri stepped up with just under ten minutes of normal time remaining to draw the hosts level and ensure they came away from the game with something, although Mauricio Pochettino will once again rue Chelsea’s missed opportunities.
Away Blues fans will think they may have got more than a point, but they also had to deal with the cancellation of the last Avanti train from Manchester to Euston, causing thousands of people to be diverted.
Jack Gaughan provides some of the moments you may have missed Manchester City-Chelsea 1-1:
Raheem Sterling was friendly with the Manchester City squad on his return to the Etihad
The Chelsea forward kept his celebrations quiet after opening the scoring in the first half.
Barring a few boos from a section of the crowd, Raheem Sterling will always be welcome at the Etihad Stadium. As one of the greats of the modern club after 131 goals in seven seasons, there are many people who wanted to greet him on his return.
One of those staff members was a first team chef, affectionately known as ‘Chops’, who joined Sterling as he walked in, and the pair laughed and joked about old times.
That goodwill changed with four minutes left before the break, when Sterling cut inside Kyle Walker to give Chelsea the lead. He went against the wishes of his manager and decided not to celebrate.
Fair play to Chelsea fans who made this trip from west London on public transport. In his infinite wisdom, the hapless Avanti canceled the 8.15pm train to London Euston, meaning the last one back on the tracks was just after the break.
In fact, Pep Guardiola addressed the trips in his program notes, written before the cancellations. “It’s not easy to travel that far to see a game right now, so thank you for being here,” he said.
It’s almost as if this was a sadly predictable situation that Chelsea fans were left with. They still filled the away end, and many found alternative routes home.
Moisés Caicedo looked like a walking red card for much of the night, but Maurico Pochettino treated it differently to Liverpool’s recent defeat. At Anfield, Caicedo was caught trying to avoid a sending off but here, with victory in sight, Pochettino kept faith in the central midfielder’s discipline.
Pep Guardiola addressed travel in his program notes, written before late train cancellations
Mauricio Pochettino did well to prepare Chelsea, but the Blues will continue to look for new forwards
Around 30 protesters gathered near the main entrance hours before kick-off to protest Israel’s role in the Gaza conflict. One sign read: “Kick Israel out of FIFA.”
It is no surprise that Chelsea are looking for strikers in the summer with what has happened. Mauricio Pochettino did a good job preparing against the champions and they created more chances than many City opponents at this stadium, but they really should have put the game away. Nicolas Jackson wasted his 15th “big chance” of the season and someone up there with the right instinct for goal would have more comfortably secured the points.