Manchester United have ended Manchester City’s winning run of 21 consecutive games across all competitions after a 2-0 win at Etihad Stadium in the Premier League on Sunday.
The result is unlikely to change the course of the title race with Pep Guardiola’s men still 11 points clear of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side, but City’s dominant run is now over, thanks to goals from Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw.
The impressive Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw scored to make it three consecutive victories at the Etihad as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer bettered Pep Guardiola’s side once again.
The victory prompted joyous scenes at full-time as United moved back to second in the Premier League table.
United, who have now gone 22 league away games unbeaten – including 14 wins – stunned City with a fast start and were ahead after a penalty was awarded inside the first 30 seconds when Gabriel Jesus fouled the impressive Antony Martial.
Bruno Fernandes scored from the spot despite City keeper Ederson getting a strong hand on the ball, then United fashioned the win with a mixture of solid defence and constant menace on the break.
Rodri almost equalised just after the break when his shot glanced off the angle of post and bar, but United effectively sealed the win – condemning City to their first loss since a 2-0 defeat at Tottenham on 21 November – when the outstanding Shaw, who had earlier missed a chance to double United’s lead, led a counter-attack, exchanging passes with Marcus Rashford before beating Ederson with a low shot.
Solskjaer’s team, who had not scored in their previous three games, moved back into second place, a point ahead of Leicester City in the increasing tight fight for a place in the top four.
United’s recent performances were greeted with frustration, particularly after they played out unambitious, goalless stalemates at Chelsea and Crystal Palace.
It cemented the impression that this was a very talented side that had arguably under-achieved this season.
This was the other face of United, the one they need to show more often if they are to find the sort of consistency that leads to serious title challenges.
They struck early to grab the initiative, then retained impressive composure and control even as City, inevitably, threatened to work their way back into contention.