On the horizon where beauty and sadism meet, Manchester City tore Brighton to ornate, sumptuous shreds. It was luxurious, it was cruel, it was pointless and yet in a strange way seemed to mean everything. Everyone knows that City’s biggest battles lie further afield: in the Champions League, and in the Lausanne courtroom where they will learn their fate on Monday. And here, with nothing tangible to play for in the league, City could simply play for the joy of playing, abetted by an opposition more than happy to let them do so.
Raheem Sterling bagged a hat-trick, Gabriel Jesus and Bernardo Silva added one each, but by then everyone was having too much fun to keep counting. For all the muted celebrations and multiple substitutions, giving the whole affair the feel of an international friendly against a small island nation with a precious vote on the Fifa executive committee, City’s intensity was irrepressible and irresistible. Perhaps, on reflection, this is the best way to enjoy Pep Guardiola’s baroque creation: no fans, no background noise, no forced narratives. Just football as its own lavish end.
Written by Jonathan Liew at the Amex Stadium
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/football/2020/jul/11/brighton-manchester-city-premier-league-match-report under the title “Raheem Sterling stoops to conquer Brighton with Manchester City hat-trick”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.