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Sterling scores and sees red as Man City beat Cherries

Raheem Sterling’s winner sparked wild celebrations in the away end

Raheem Sterling scored a 97th-minute winner and was then sent off for his celebration as Manchester City came from behind to win at Bournemouth.

After his deflected shot looped in, Sterling celebrated by running to celebrate with the City fans and was shown a second yellow card by referee Mike Dean.

The Cherries had dominated the early exchanges and took a deserved lead on 13 minutes when Charlie Daniels drilled home a stunning half-volley off the crossbar from the edge of the area.

But City equalised eight minutes later with their first shot on target, David Silva picking out Gabriel Jesus with a perfectly weighted pass for the Brazilian to roll the ball home.

The goal seemed to spark the visitors into life and they dominated the rest of the half without adding to their score.

Both teams had chances after the break, with Bournemouth’s Joshua King and City’s Nicolas Otamendi hitting the post.

King had another opportunity to win it for the hosts when he outmuscled Benjamin Mendy, but his shot was straight at Ederson.

Sterling’s winner came moments later, sparking wild celebrations and sending City top of the table.

The finale was best summed up by City captain Vincent Kompany, who described it as “madness”.

He told Sky Sports: “The first thing I did was say to Benjamin Mendy and Bernardo Silva: ‘Welcome to the Premier League.'”

City boss Pep Guardiola, meanwhile, said he did not understand Sterling’s red card.

He added: “I am told the card was for celebrating with the fans. We don’t invite the fans? Maybe we play without fans?”

Was Sterling’s red card right?

Final Score: Raheem Sterling red card a ‘travesty’ – Garth Crooks

While City’s fighting spirit will draw praise, Dean’s performance will not elicit the same response.

Football’s laws state players must be cautioned if they “approach the spectators in a manner which can cause safety and/or security issues”.

But, speaking about Sterling’s sending-off, Guardiola told BBC Sport: “I don’t understand. Hopefully they can call me and explain the reason why.”

Former England striker Alan Shearer tweeted: “Don’t give me ‘it’s the law’ nonsense. Mike Dean has clearly never experienced scoring the winning goal.

“And for all saying ‘but it is the law’ if we are going to rigidly apply law with no common sense, why did he only book Sterling?”

Ex-West Ham striker Bobby Zamora wrote: “Can’t celebrate a goal now? Absolute joke.”

And former Spurs striker Garth Crooks, speaking on the BBC’s Final Score, said: “Who is Mike Dean appealing to by sending him off for that? It’s certainly not the crowd.”

Sterling is the first Premier League player to be sent off for excessive celebration since Frederic Piquionne for West Ham against Everton in January 2011.

But his dismissal was not the only controversial decision in the match.

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

“I think Mike Dean has got that one wrong,” said former Premier League goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer on BBC Radio 5 live. “Ake should have been sent off.”

Guardiola wants Sterling red card explained

Guardiola rings the changes

While Sterling’s dismissal dominated the post-match analysis, all the talk before the game had centred on Guardiola’s team selection.

The Spaniard made four changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Everton on Monday, with striker Sergio Aguero dropping to the bench.

Defender John Stones was also among the substitutes, while Mendy made his debut and Danilo came in for the suspended Kyle Walker.

City, who played three at the back against Everton and Brighton, reverted to a back four, with full-backs Mendy and Danilo pushed high up the pitch.

In between them, and after an uncomfortable opening 20 minutes, Otamendi eventually settled alongside Kompany.

City had more than 70% possession in the match, and Guardiola was happy his team came away with all three points.

He told Sky Sports: “Winning in the last minute is always special.

“It was a tough game. It is always complicated against Bournemouth. They play long balls, balls into the channels and play set-pieces, but we got into the game.”

For Bournemouth’s part, though they impressed for periods of the match, their third successive league defeat means they are yet to win a point this season.

Daniels scored from a tight angle with a stunning finish

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe told BBC Sport: “We thought we had hung on for a point. We had chances to win it, too. I am disappointed for the players and the supporters.

“The second half was bitty, we wanted that to be the case. I am enthused by the performance, which was better than our first two.

“We started really well, very positively. We created more chances today than in our first two games, but we need to start getting some points quickly.

“We knew it would be a different test. We had to be disciplined, which I felt we were, but one or two moments of class from them can hurt you.”

Howe ‘enthused’ despite Bournemouth defeat

Man of the match – David Silva

His pinpoint pass set up City’s first goal, and his control and distribution were crucial to City’s attacks

City streak continues, Cherries drop points again

  • Bournemouth have lost their first three league games in a campaign for the first time since 1994-95 in the third tier.
  • Since the start of the 2015-16 season, only West Ham (41) have dropped more points from winning positions in the Premier League than Bournemouth (39 – level with Liverpool).
  • Jesus has been directly involved in 12 goals in his 11 Premier League starts for Man City (eight goals, four assists).
  • Daniels netted his eight goal in the Premier League, but this was his first from outside the box.
  • City have gone 11 Premier League games without defeat for the first time since September 2015 (won eight, drawn three).
  • Aguero failed to score in an away Premier League appearance for the first time since February, also against Bournemouth.
  • Sterling has scored six Premier League goals against Bournemouth; more than versus any other club in the competition.

What’s next?

After the international break, City host Liverpool on Saturday, 9 September, while Bournemouth travel to Arsenal.

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