Southampton 0-1 Manchester City: Player Ratings as Raheem Sterling Edges City to Victory

Manchester City returned to winning ways on Saturday afternoon, edging past Southampton with a hard-fought 1-0 victory at St Mary's.

The visitors opened the scoring on 16 minutes, when Raheem Sterling was on hand to slot home from a pinpoint Kevin de Bruyne cut-back.

City pushed in the second half, and both Bernardo Silva and De Bruyne had chances to kill the game, but they saw their efforts blocked and saved respectively. A slight mix-up at the back almost allowed Che Adams a chance to equalise for Southampton, but his header hit the side netting.

Pep Guardiola's men held on to claim all three points, narrowing the gap on Liverpool after the Reds' 7-0 victory earlier in the day.

Let's check out the player ratings from a tense afternoon at St Mary's.


1. Goalkeeper & Defenders

Battling away | ADRIAN DENNIS/Getty Images

Alex McCarthy (GK) - 7/10 - Had little hope of stopping Sterling's close-range effort, struck with such power and accuracy. Produced decent saves to deny De Bruyne and Gundogan in the second half.

Kyle Walker-Peters (RB) - 7/10 - Full of energy, possessing so much confidence to take on his marker and drive at the Man City defence. Solid at the back, too.

Jannik Vestergaard (CB) - 7/10 - Rarely put a foot wrong, and only began to look stretched as Saints tried to get back into the match.

Jan Bednarek (CB) - 6/10 -
Not quite at the levels of his defensive partner, but competent nonetheless.

Ryan Bertrand (LB) - 6/10 - Exposed and cut open down his flank for Sterling's strike, but recovered to compete excellently against some strong opponents.

2. Midfielders

Ward-Prowse asking questions | Pool/Getty Images

Theo Walcott (RM) - 7/10 - Really tested Cancelo on that right flank, working seamlessly with Walker-Peters to carve out some dangerous crossing positions.

James Ward-Prowse (CM) - 6/10 - Almost scored directly from a corner with a dangerous whipped delivery. Unable to provide anything meaningful from open play.

Oriol Romeu (CM) - 6/10 - Broke up play when he could, but ended up overrun by Man City's slick passing and movement in the midfield. Not at his best.

Moussa Djenepo (LW) - 5/10 - Didn't offer any major threat to Walker, who snuffed out the danger superbly. Couldn't find a way around the England star. Subbed.

3. Forwards

Down again | Pool/Getty Images

Danny Ings (ST) - 6/10 - Looked sharp and caused problems until pulling up injured just before half-time. Such a shame for the England man.

Che Adams (ST) - 6/10 - A tireless, determined display from the forward. Pressed from the front, not giving Dias a moments peace. Chances didn't fall his way.

4. Substitutes

Nathan Tella (ST) - 5/10

Nathan Redmond (LW) - 6/10

Daniel N'Lundulu (ST) - N/A


5. Goalkeeper & Defenders

Focused | Naomi Baker/Getty Images

Ederson (GK) - 8/10 - Made a couple of top-draw saves in the first half, as Southampton pushed to pull level. On his toes to keep out Ward-Prowse's in-swinging corner.

Kyle Walker (RB) - 8/10 - Faced a potentially tough opponent in Djenepo on that flank, but kept the tricky winger quiet and put in some great headers while defending the far post.

Ruben Dias (CB) - 7/10 -
Risked conceding a penalty with a flying challenge on Ings, but got away with it. Calm in possession and got Man City moving with some glorious vertical passes.

John Stones (CB) - 8/10 - Growing by the game. Afternoon eased when Ings was forced off through injury, and stopped Tella from making any sort of impact on the game.

Joao Cancelo (LB) - 7/10 - Not a natural left-back, but improving. Constantly overlapping to support Sterling. Had the sterner test of the full-backs against the experienced Walcott and passed.

6. Midfielders

Ready to pick his pass | Pool/Getty Images

Kevin de Bruyne (CM) - 8/10 - Lovely work down that right-hand side to find space and pull the ball back with ruthless accuracy for Sterling. No less than we expect from the assist master. Should have been rewarded with another for Silva, too.

Rodrigo (CM) - 7/10 - The shield in front of the defence, stopping Ward-Prowse from picking passes. Solid and uncompromising. Less is more from Rodri.

Ilkay Gundogan (CM) - 7/10 - Played a more box to box role, shuttling and carrying the ball, while constantly keeping the game moving with his quick passing. Nice variation to his play.

7. Forwards

Deadlock broken | Naomi Baker/Getty Images

Ferran Torres (RW) - 7/10 - Flashed a wicked shot just across goal at the start of the second half. Stayed wide and offered some much-needed width to their play.

Bernardo Silva (ST) - 6/10 - Should have killed the game at the start of the second half, but fluffed a strike on his weaker right foot when bearing down on goal.

Raheem Sterling (LW) - 8/10 - Struck the decisive blow to dent Southampton's confidence, tucking the ball away with ease. Linked up nicely with De Bruyne and drifted around, always looking to find space and gaps in the defence.

8. Substitutes

Riyad Mahrez (RW) - 6/10

Source : 90min