A double from Raheem Sterling and goals from Sergio Agüero and Bernardo Silva were not enough to keep Manchester City's hopes of a remarkable four-trophy season alive.

By Daniel Herborn


Posted on April 18, 2019

Manchester City won the action-packed quarterfinal 4-3 but Tottenham Hotspur will progress as they scored three away goals to City’s zero. Tottenham Hotspur had won the first leg 1-0.

Five goals in the first 21 minutes set the tone for a frenetic clash. It also set a new record for the fastest scoring in Champions League history.

It was an agonising exit for Manchester City especially given that Raheem Sterling’s injury time strike was ruled offside by VAR.

Manchester City eyeing another English Premier League (EPL) title

In the EPL, Liverpool are currently two points ahead of Manchester City, but the latter have a game in hand.

City now have to dust themselves off before another clash with Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday 20 April. Their opponents are a distant third on the EPL ladder but represent the biggest obstacle facing the Sky Blues as they close in on what will be their fourth EPL title in eight seasons.

Liverpool, meanwhile, have an easier run home on paper, with only one of their opponents (Wolves) being in the top half of the ladder.

FiveThirtyEight’s algorithms are predicting a razor’s edge finish, with Manchester City given a 52% chance of winning the EPL and Liverpool the only other contender at 48%.

The Manchester team were not quite as dominant as in their previous campaign, where they racked up a record 100 points and only lost two games. Per The Ringer writer Ryan O’Hanlon, in the 2017/18 EPL season they led the league in:

  • shots
  • shots against
  • shots on target
  • shots on target against
  • goals
  • goals against
  • expected goals
  • expected goals against
  • expected goals per shot
  • possession
  • pass completion percentage
  • deep passes completed
  • deep passes against
  • PPDA (passes allowed per defensive action)
  • PPDA against
  • They were only marginally less effective this year, however, and have continued to successfully leverage the deep pockets of ownership into a slick machine that reliably produces top-shelf attacking football. Leroy Sané, Sergio Agüero and Fernandinho have all had phenomenal campaigns but Raheem Sterling, an ex-Liverpool player, has arguably been their most influential figure.

    In many years, Liverpool would have done enough to win the EPL

    Their consistency means that Liverpool, who have an incredible year in their own right and have only lost a single match, will likely have to settle for a heartbreakingly close second-placed finish. Liverpool have actually never won the league during the Premier League era and also had to be content with the runner’s up spot in 2013/14 after a late surge from their current rivals for the top spot.

    The two ladder leaders also boast the two top goal scorers for the season with Sergio Agüero and Liverpool’s Mo Salah each having notched 19 goals. Salah was recently named one of TIME’s 100 most influential people in the world.

    There has been little between the two teams all season after both made bright starts. Statistics reveal only minute differences; Manchester City have recorded a tackle success rate of 64% to Liverpool’s 62% and has recorded only 37 yellow cards to their rivals’ 36. Meanwhile, Liverpool have a slightly higher shooting accuracy of 40% to the Sky Blues’ 39%.

    Manchester City: remaining EPL matches

    v Tottenham Hotspur (home) 20 April
    v Manchester United (away) 25 April
    v Burnley (away) 28 April
    v Leicester (home) 4 May
    v Brighton (away) 13 May

    Liverpool: remaining EPL matches

    v Cardiff (away) 22 April
    v Huddersfield (home) 27 April
    v Newcastle (away) 6 May
    v Wolves (home) 13 May