Manchester City overpowered Tottenham with a stunning comeback at Etihad Stadium to close the gap on Premier League leaders Arsenal to five points in a dramatic 2-4 victory.
Spurs looked to be doing bitter north London rivals Arsenal a huge favour when they scored twice in the closing moments of the first half to leave Pep Guardiola’s side staring at a third successive loss.
Dejan Kulusevski gave Spurs the lead seconds before the break after Rodrigo Bentancur robbed Rodri following Ederson’s poor clearance, then Emerson Royal headed a second after the City keeper could only push out Harry Kane’s shot.
Most inside the Etihad Stadium were frustrated but City, inspired by the outstanding Riyad Mahrez, came flying out after the interval to turn the game on its head with three goals in 12 minutes.
Julian Alvarez scored from close range after Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris could not claim Mahrez’s cross in the 51st minute, then Erling Haaland headed in from close range two minutes later to draw City level.
Spurs almost regained the lead when Ivan Perisic’s shot was deflected onto the woodwork by Rico Lewis before Mahrez completed City’s comeback, winning a challenge before beating Lloris at his near post.
France veteran Lloris was at fault once again after his own goal set Arsenal on their way to victory in the derby on Sunday.
Mahrez completed a brilliant individual display when he raced clear in stoppage time to lift a clever finish over the keeper for City’s fourth.
Manchester City left the pitch at half-time with heads bowed and their jeering supporters frustrated, mainly by what they felt was referee Simon Hooper’s failure to punish Spurs for a succession of fouls as well as a two-goal deficit.
What followed was a devastating show of power from City, who came out after the break and simply refused to be denied as Spurs were unable to cope with their attacking variety.
Mahrez was magnificent, scoring two goals and being involved in the others and he continues his rich vein of form.
City have also uncovered another gem in 18-year-old Rico Lewis, who was heavily involved before and after the double strike from Spurs that made Etihad Stadium such an anxious place during the interval.