A last-gasp goal and a red card for Sterling

Manchester City's Raheem Sterling is bewildered after receiving a second yellow card from referee Mike Dean for going into the crowd to celebrate his 97th-minute goal yesterday.
Manchester City's Raheem Sterling is bewildered after receiving a second yellow card from referee Mike Dean for going into the crowd to celebrate his 97th-minute goal yesterday.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE

Bournemouth 1 Manchester City 2

LONDON • In the seventh minute of added time yesterday, the Manchester City technical area exploded to life, as Raheem Sterling wheeled away after earning three priceless Premier League points at Bournemouth.

His celebrations, as he jumped into the travelling supporters, earned him a second yellow card at the Vitality Stadium.

But he may not care too much as Pep Guardiola's side took a 2-1 victory in the cruellest manner, in an entertaining, and often heated, contest between two teams coached by perfectionists.

City were heading for a second successive league draw before Sterling nicked the winner, with precious little time to play.

"Winning in the last minute is always special," said Guardiola.

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"It was a tough game. They play long balls, balls into the channels and play set-pieces, but we got into the game. Our finishing was not good, but we are there."

Gabriel Jesus had drilled in a first-half equaliser for City after Bournemouth defender Charlie Daniels scored on 13 minutes.

At the final whistle, Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe had his head in his hands.

City, though, had extended their unbeaten record to 11 matches. While their fighting spirit was praiseworthy, referee Mike Dean's performance was not.

Bournemouth's Nathan Ake should have been sent off for a blatant first-half trip on Jesus when the striker was through on goal. He was only booked.

But it was Sterling's sending-off that caused the most controversy.

Guardiola told BBC Sport: "I do not understand the decision. If you cannot celebrate with the fans, tell me the reason why."

Daniels was aggrieved that Sterling's winning goal arrived in the seventh minute of stoppage time, after the fourth official indicated only five minutes of additional time would be played.

He said: "In the lead-up to the goal, he (Dean) awarded a free kick which was a perfectly timed tackle by Lys Mousset. It was gutting for us to concede after that and I would like to find out where he got that extra time from."

THE GUARDIAN, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on August 27, 2017, with the headline 'A last-gasp goal and a red card for Sterling'. Print Edition | Subscribe