Ivan Toney responded to being overlooked for England’s World Cup squad by delivering a match-winning two-goal performance in Brentford’s thoroughly deserved Premier League win at Manchester City.
Toney missed out on a place in Qatar but demonstrated his vital importance to Brentford with an outstanding all-round display that left the reigning Premier League champions stunned as the Bees took all three points with a 98th-minute winner.
It was fully merited for Brentford’s positive approach as they refused to take a backward step from the first whistle, even after Manchester City’s Phil Foden restored equality with a crisp left-foot half-volley seconds before the interval.
City, inevitably, turned up the tempo after the break, Ilkay Gundogan missing a glorious chance to put them ahead, but Brentford were a constant threat on the break with Ederson twice having to save from the ever-dangerous Toney.
And it was a fitting conclusion to that added period of 10 minutes, mainly for a head injury to Aymeric Laporte, when Brentford caught City on the break for Toney to sweep home Josh Dasilva’s cross – the striker almost completing a hat-trick seconds later only for Kevin de Bruyne to clear off the line.
Brentford show the way
Brentford demonstrated that bravery can be rewarded at Manchester City, not even needing any real slices of good fortune to deliver another outstanding victory under manager Thomas Frank.
Leicester City’s risk-averse approach at home to the champions recently drew a negative response, their stand-offish manner made to look even more unwise when they lost 1-0.
Brentford went for Manchester City from the first whistle, perhaps noting the vulnerability that saw them just scrape victory over Fulham with a last-minute penalty last weekend.
Toney was thwarted by Ederson even before he opened the scoring and with the outstanding Rico Henry providing pace and threat on the flanks, Brentford did not change their approach even after Foden’s equaliser looked to have changed the game.
Brentford may have caught City on an off-day but Frank produced a gameplan that kept Erling Haaland quiet for once while posing a constant threat that eventually brought that dramatic late winner.
The ecstatic scenes at the final whistle were understandable and thoroughly deserved. No-one could begrudge Brentford their celebrations.
No escape for Manchester City
Manchester City just crawled over the line against Fulham with a stoppage-time penalty from Haaland but there were no escape this time and they did not deserve one.
City started as if in a daze, conceding early chances, and they were still only half awake even after Toney headed Brentford in front.
It looked like they were back on track after Foden’s leveller but for all their increased pressure there was none of their trademark fluency as they were frustrated by Brentford’s defensive resilience and determination.
It could have been a lot worse but for keeper Ederson and it was hardly a huge shock when Brentford raided so deep into added time to take the points, City caught in disarray at the back as the Bees swept forward.
This is a result that dents City’s hopes of retaining their title and sends them into the lengthy break for the World Cup on the worst possible note.
- 7CanceloBooked at 84minsSubstituted forÁlvarezat 87′minutes
- 17De Bruyne
- 20Bernardo Silva
- 9HaalandBooked at 37mins
- 3Rúben Dias
- 13M Jorgensen
- 15OnyekaSubstituted forDasilvaat 87′minutes
- 27JaneltSubstituted forNørgaardat 62′minutes
- 8JensenBooked at 90mins
- 19MbeumoBooked at 72minsSubstituted forWissaat 74′minutes
- Peter Bankes
Match ends, Manchester City 1, Brentford 2.
Second Half ends, Manchester City 1, Brentford 2.
Attempt saved. Julián Álvarez (Manchester City) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Bernardo Silva with a cross.
Attempt blocked. Ivan Toney (Brentford) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Josh Dasilva.
Goal! Manchester City 1, Brentford 2. Ivan Toney (Brentford) right footed shot from very close range to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Josh Dasilva following a fast break.
Corner, Manchester City. Conceded by Zanka.
Attempt blocked. Phil Foden (Manchester City) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Aymeric Laporte.
Attempt blocked. Rodri (Manchester City) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by John Stones.
Foul by Rodri (Manchester City).
Christian Nørgaard (Brentford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Offside, Brentford. Yoane Wissa tries a through ball, but Ivan Toney is caught offside.
Attempt missed. Manuel Akanji (Manchester City) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.
Mathias Jensen (Brentford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Mathias Jensen (Brentford).
Corner, Brentford. Conceded by Ederson.
Attempt saved. Ivan Toney (Brentford) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is saved in the centre of the goal.
Foul by Julián Álvarez (Manchester City).
Ivan Toney (Brentford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt blocked. Rodri (Manchester City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Julián Álvarez.
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