Ball boy interrupts play as Crystal Palace edge Man City 3-2

Manchester City were not at their best in the opening stages of the game, but took the lead through Ilkay Gundogan after 27 minutes.

Palace midfielder Jeffrey Schlupp failed to track the German's run into the box as he arrived to meet a well-weighted cross from Fabian Delph to nod the ball past the helpless Vicente Guaita.

If that finish was impressive, Townsend's remarkable goal 10 minutes before half-time was something else altogether as he put his left foot sweetly through an audacious volley, leaving Ederson with no chance.

They did have opportunities as Sane drove into the side-netting, Raheem Sterling sliced a shot and Bernardo Silva had an effort blocked but Palace stood up to the challenge.

Manchester City cede further ground in the Premier League title race by throwing away a one-goal lead to lose 3-2 at home to Crystal Palace.

Townsend will rightfully hog the headlines but Wan-Bissaka did much to enhance his burgeoning reputation, keeping the in-form Sane on a short leash and making a succession of courageous challenges. Palace penalty taker Luka Milivojević made no mistake from the spot, firing out of reach of a diving Ederson, to increase Palace's lead.

Andros Townsend has scored a goal of the season contender - if not the actual award victor - against Manchester City.

An off day for City? It's one of those games where everything goes wrong.

However, Pep Guardiola felt taht his team had played well and just fell victim to some clinical finishing from Crystal Palace.

Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang shot to the top of the Premier League scoring charts with two goals in the 3-1 home win over struggling Burnley in the day's early game. What was worrying, although he did not say it in his postmatch news conference, was how quickly his City side was knocked out of its stride.

He ensured City were less wasteful in possession and scored a goal - albeit from a cross. Subs: Aguero 5, De Bruyne 7, Mahrez 5.

Two defeats in three games for City, who lost at Chelsea a fortnight ago, have given Juergen Klopp's Liverpool the upper hand in the title race and turned the January 3 clash between the sides at the Etihad into a real showdown. Kyle Walker will not have assured him that this is the case.

Guardiola added: 'The first two times Crystal Palace crossed our halfway line they scored.

The return of Wilfried Zaha is a giant boost to Roy Hodgson's side coming into the festive period. He played good except one ball. But that Townsend goal, there's just no stopping that.

The Citizens had not previously dropped a single point in their nine home games this season, but Palace stunned the champions with an unlikely turnaround at the Etihad Stadium.

  • Rosalie Stanley