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Live Commentary: Bournemouth 0-1 Manchester City - as it happened

:Headline: Live Commentary: Bournemouth 0-1 Manchester City - as it happened:
Relive Manchester City's 1-0 win over Bournemouth as Riyad Mahrez scores the only goal of the game to fire the champions back to the top of the Premier League table.
By , Editor | 4mo

Manchester City returned to the top of the Premier League table this afternoon courtesy of a 1-0 win over Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.

The champions struggled to find a breakthrough until Riyad Mahrez snuck the ball under Artur Boruc from a tight angle 10 minutes into the second half.

That was enough to hand Pep Guardiola's side a crucial three points in the title race, although the victory did come at a cost with Kevin De Bruyne and John Stones being forced off injured.

Find out how all of the action unfolded courtesy of our minute-by-minute updates below.

Good afternoon! Thank you very much for joining Sports Mole for today's Premier League clash between Bournemouth and Manchester City at the Vitality Stadium!

City could climb back to the top of the table with a victory - or even a draw - here, with Liverpool not in action until tomorrow's Merseyside derby. Bournemouth are an entirely different prospect at home than they are on the road, though, and may feel that they have a chance of pulling off an upset today despite their poor record against City in recent years.

Kickoff is just five minutes away, so let's have a quick look at the team news before we get started...

BOURNEMOUTH STARTING XI: Boruc; Clyne, Mepham, Simpson, Daniels; Smith, Ake, Surman, Fraser; Brooks; King

SUBS: Begovic, Rico, Gosling, Taylor, Ibe. Mousset, Surridge

MAN CITY STARTING XI: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Otamendi, Zinchenko; Gundogan, Silva, De Bruyne; Sterling, Bernardo, Aguero

SUBS: Muric, Danilo, Kompany, Sane, Mahrez, Jesus, Foden

KICKOFF:  Here we go! Sergio Aguero gets us underway at the Vitality Stadium!
Bournemouth have started with a back three today, which may just be designed to take Man City by surprise. Guardiola would have been expecting a back four, so he may have to alter his plans from the off here.
CHANCE!  Half a chance for Otamendi early on as he escapes his marker from a corner. De Bruyne swings the ball in and Otamendi gets his head to it, but he cannot make good enough contact and only glances the ball wide.
Man City, as expected, have taken an early command of the ball here as they probe for a quick opener. Bournemouth are pinned right back at the moment and are struggling to get a kick.
The pattern may well have been set for this match already. It is pass after pass for City and Bournemouth are already on the ropes to a certain extent. Man City aren't exactly cutting through the defence, but Bournemouth just can't get up the field at the moment.
Aguero almost steals in behind to latch on to a floated pass over the top, but the offside flag is raised. That was a close one!
Important defending from Ake as Zinchenko's cross from the left threatens to fall for Aguero, who is lining up a volley before Ake glances it behind.
Another Man City corner causes a few problems for Bournemouth, but this time the ball comes off the head of Ake and he is fortunate that it bounces kindly into the arms of Boruc.
Bournemouth are showing City a little too much respect at the moment. They are standing off and giving the champions all the time they want on the ball without harrying them and trying to upset their rhythm.
Safe hands from Boruc as he plucks De Bruyne's cross out of the air under a bit of pressure. Even that claim is a chance for some respite from this relentless pressure.
UPDATE: A flurry of goals elsewhere in the Premier League, including a quickfire double for Wolves against Cardiff! Jimenez assisted Jota for the opener before the pair exchanged roles to double the lead moments later. Palace also lead Burnley through a Phil Bardsley own goal.
CHANCE!  The first big chance of the game for City, and David Silva probably should do better. Bernardo and De Bruyne link up down the right channel and the latter pulls a low cross back into the box which Silva meets. However, he puts his finish wide when he would have expected to at least hit the target.
Another important interception from Ake as he steps in nick the ball off Aguero, who could not take Silva's through-ball in his stride. Those Bournemouth defenders will be busy today!
Brooks skips away from a couple of challenges before going down in a heap fairly dramatically. The Bournemouth players want a free kick, but the referee says no and it looked like he was on his way down anyway.
UPDATE: Some news which will put a smile on the face of Man City fans - Manchester United have just fallen behind against Southampton at Old Trafford. Valery got the goal and United now have work to do if they are to make the most of Arsenal's dropped points earlier.
City slice Bournemouth open down the left flank through Sterling, who reaches the byline before cutting the ball back. Once again it is Silva there, but he either miscontrols it or purposefully lets the ball run through to no-one, and Bournemouth are able to clear.
Well, Bournemouth have almost got through the opening half an hour without much damage at all. Man City have dominated possession and territory, but they haven't created too much so far.
Ake has had a titanic opening 30 minutes here. He has been like a magnet in the middle, clearing cross after cross into the box. How long can Bournemouth keep this up for, though?
SHOT!  This would be some way to find the breakthrough! A corner finds Otamendi towards the edge of the area and he pulls off a brilliant acrobatic effort which flies a yard or so over. Boruc looked to have it covered, but it was a really good effort from the Argentine.
The latest cross into the Bournemouth box is only cleared as far as Aguero, but his left-footed volley is a long way off target. Where is Otamendi when you need him?!
Just over 10 minutes until half time now and Eddie Howe will be pleased with his side's discipline so far. It is a dangerous game to try to defend against Man City for a full 90 minutes, though, as they are bound to find a breakthrough sooner or later.
The officials have not endeared themselves to these Bournemouth fans so far today. There have been a few marginal calls which have all gone the way of Man City and the frustration is growing amongst the home supporters.
City were forced to be patient in their narrow win over West Ham last time out, and it could be a similar story here. They are in control, but cannot find that end product at the moment.
Bournemouth have offered next to nothing in an attacking sense so far and that is something they will be hoping to improve, but from a defensive point of view Howe will be very happy with his side so far.
CLOSE!  Sterling, who has such an incredible record against Bournemouth, almost opens the scoring in some style here as he cuts onto his right foot before curling a fine effort narrowly wide of the far post.
There is some concern over Mepham here as he needs treatment after a bad landing on his ankle, but he should be fine to continue.
There is a bigger concern for Man City now, though. De Bruyne pulls up with no player around him and it looks like his afternoon might be over.
There will be two minutes of added time at the end of the first half.
MAN CITY SUB: There is the change as Riyad Mahrez replaces the injured De Bruyne.
CHANCE!  Almost the breakthrough for Man City right at the end of the half as a corner is not dealt with by Bournemouth, resulting in a scramble which the Cherries eventually clear.
The first half comes to an end at the Vitality Stadium and we are still goalless between Bournemouth and Manchester City as the champions toil for a way through at Dean Court.

City have dominated possession and territory, but clear chances have been difficult to come by and so far Bournemouth have managed to frustrate their visitors.

The best chance has fallen the way of David Silva, who should have done better after being picked out by De Bruyne's cutback. The Spaniard had a bit of time and space inside the area, but planted his finish wide of the target.

Sterling has also come close with a curling effort while Otamendi has threatened from a couple of corners, but the first half ended on a sour note for the champions as De Bruyne limped off with an injury.

Bournemouth have offered nothing of note in an attacking sense, with Ederson barely touching the ball, but they have remained disciplined at the back to make things difficult for City.

There is still a long way to go in this match, of course, and you'd think that Man City would eventually find a breakthrough if the same pattern occurs in the second half, but it certainly isn't plain-sailing for the visitors.

As things stand Man City would still be returning to the top of the Premier League table, but they would only be above Liverpool on goal difference having played a game more than their fellow title contenders.

You would expect Man City to up the intensity again in the second half, then, and they always have the likes of Sane and Gabriel Jesus on the bench to call upon.

KICKOFF:  Bournemouth get us back underway for the second half at the Vitality Stadium.
Already Bournemouth have done more in an attacking sense than in the entire first half, winning a free kick which Fraser swings into the box. Ederson is commanding, though, punching it clear while clattering into Ake in the process.
MAN CITY SUB: City are forced into another change here as Vincent Kompany replaces Stones.
What those two injury changes mean is that Guardiola's options to bring on attacking players is limited now if this remains goalless. Only one of Sane or Jesus will make it onto the field today now.
Indeed, the injury count is growing for Man City at the moment after they also lost Fernandinho and Laporte in the EFL Cup final last weekend. Guardiola has spoken about his frustration at the fixture pile up and it is having an impact on his side.
SHOT!  Bernardo tries to take things into his own hands by driving into the box before cutting back onto his left and going for goal, but his effort is always rising and ends up well over the bar.
GOAL!  Man City do finally find the breakthrough, and it is Mahrez - one of the men off the bench due to those injuries - who gets it!

Boruc will feel that he should do much better, though, as he allows a fairly tame finish to creep under him at the near post - one that should never go in from that angle. It was good play from City in the build-up with some quick passing and Silva provided the final one out to Mahrez, who fired home.

UPDATE: It was quite a good few minutes for Manchester clubs - United have also levelled things up against Southampton through Andreas Pereira. Elsewhere, Crystal Palace have doubled their lead against Burnley through Michy Batshuayi.
UPDATE: ...indeed, Manchester United have just completed the turnaround with Romelu Lukaku making it 2-1 against Southampton!

The pattern of the game has not changed much since that opening goal, but it is something Bournemouth must try to alter sooner rather than later. Still not much for Ederson to do at all.
CHANCE!  Sterling has the chance to continue his record against Bournemouth as he gets the wrong side of the defence and races clean through on goal, but this time Boruc will not be beaten at his near post and turns it behind for a corner.
YELLOW CARD!  Otamendi meets that corner, but does so with his hand and is subsequently shown a yellow card by the ref.
This scoreline is still by no means secure, but City are in complete control of this match at the moment. A second would surely kill the game off as Bournemouth have offered nothing going forward.
CHANCE!  Smart footwork from Aguero as he collects Sterling's low cross before quickly stabbing at the ball with the outside of his foot, but he cannot get enough power on it to beat Boruc.
This is Man City's third game in the space of a week, and in all three of those games they have been some way short of their dazzling best. However, they got the job done against Chelsea and West Ham, and it looks like they might do the same again here.
UPDATE: It is turning into quite the afternoon for Crystal Palace, who are now 3-0 up away to Burnley through Wilfried Zaha. Southampton have also just equalised against Manchester United through James Ward-Prowse!
BOURNEMOUTH SUB: Change for Bournemouth as Brooks is replaced by Lys Mousset.
CHANCE!  Boruc was at fault for the goal, but he has gone some way to atoning here! A poor header back sends Sterling clean through, but Boruc does brilliant to get a hand on the ball when Sterling was trying to round him and Mahrez then blazed the follow-up effort over with the goal unmanned.
UPDATE: A BIG goal at the bottom of the table as Brighton break the deadlock against Huddersfield through Florin Andone!
OFF THE BAR!  Oh my word, almost a bizarre goal helped by the wind here! Aguero tries to float a cross towards Mahrez but instead it swirls towards goal and Boruc gets a crucial touch to tip it against the crossbar before Ake is there to clear the danger.
BOURNEMOUTH SUBS: Double change for Bournemouth as Jordon Ibe and Diego Dico replace Clyne and Simpson.
YELLOW CARD!  Flash point here as Walker brings down King and then reacts angrily to King too. Guardiola steps between the players and Walker picks up a deserved yellow card. King also goes into the book, a little more harshly.
CHANCE!  Another fine save from Boruc to deny Mahrez! A corner is flicked on to the far post and Mahrez has looped into that position, where he is left unmarked from four yards out. He gets a firm head on the ball too, but Boruc makes the save.
SHOT!  Aguero hasn't had much today and he drags this one well wide. The Argentine created the opening himself, but didn't catch the 20-yard effort at all and it trickles past the far post.
MAN CITY SUB: A third and final change for City as Aguero is replaced by the returning Gabriel Jesus.
There will be four minutes of added time at the end of this match.
Not a vintage win for Manchester City, but a win nonetheless as they scrape past Bournemouth at Dean Court to return to the top of the Premier League table - now two points clear of Liverpool.

Riyad Mahrez came off the bench to score the winner for the champions, but their victory may have come at a cost with De Bruyne and John Stones both picking up injuries.

Right, that is all we have time for this afternoon!

Thank you very much for joining Sports Mole for today's Premier League clash as Manchester City return to the top of the Premier League table courtesy of a narrow victory over Bournemouth. I will leave you with our match report, and be sure to stick around for reaction too.

From me, though, it is goodbye for now!

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