Bernardo Silva rescues Man City in thriller at Newcastle

Two teams go toe-to-toe in 3-3 draw at St James' Park

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Bernardo Silva came to Manchester City’s rescue as the Premier League champions fought back to take a point from a six-goal thriller at Newcastle.

Silva, starting for the first time in the league this season, ensured a rip-roaring contest in which the visitors led after five minutes, but trailed 3-1 nine minutes into the second half, ended 3-3.

Before kick-off neither side had conceded a top-flight goal this season and when Ilkay Gundogan punctured the home side’s bubble within five minutes, the writing appeared to be on the wall.

But rather than opt for damage limitation, Newcastle – inspired by the individual brilliance of Allan Saint-Maximin - decided attack was the best form of defence and after Miguel Almiron had equalised, stunning finishes from Callum Wilson and Kieran Trippier in front of England boss Gareth Southgate among a crowd of 52,258 had the Magpies in dreamland.

However with another World Cup hopeful Nick Pope having already made a series of vital saves, it was a case of when, not if the backlash would arrive, and it did through £51 million summer signing Erling Haaland and Silva to set up a grandstand finish which, perhaps fittingly, failed to yield a winner.

"We wanted to go toe-to-toe with them and I thought we did that throughout the match," said Tripper, who was shown a red card in the second half before referee Jarred Gillett reversed his decision after checking VAR.

"Manchester City are a top side and they have the quality to get themselves back in the game but it shows just how far we have come. The lads are disappointed after being 3-1 up, but we have to take the positives."

Saint-Maximin added: "We are disappointed because we really wanted to win the game to show what we can do, the future is bright for Newcastle if we can keep playing at this level."

Silva and Haaland had already combined to allow Rodri to whistle a long-range strike over Pope’s crossbar when the midfielder was allowed time and space to deliver a fifth-minute cross for Gundogan to control and fire past the helpless Pope.

The Magpies keeper had to save with his legs from Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden in quick succession with the visitors dominant, although the home side should have levelled when Saint-Maximin cut the ball back for Almiron, who skied his shot high over.

Pope clawed away De Bruyne’s 20th-minute free-kick, but opposite number Ederson had to save at full stretch to keep out Saint-Maximin before substitute Ruben Dias deflected a Wilson attempt wide, although the respite proved temporary.

Saint-Maximin tricked his way past Kyle Walker and Rodri down the left to cross to the far post, where Almiron slid in to turn the ball home, and the offside flag which greeted his initial celebration was overturned on review.

Joao Cancelo had to come to Ederson’s rescue after he had rashly raced from his line to confront Almiron and was easily rounded, but he was picking the ball out of his net once again six minutes before the break when Saint-Maximin cut inside and fed Wilson, who touched the ball past Dias before dispatching it into the net with the outside of his right foot.

Haaland was unfortunate not to drag the visitors back into it within seven minutes of the restart when his shot beat Pope, but came back off the foot of a post, and his misery was compounded two minutes later when the home side extended their lead.

John Stones was penalised for bringing down the flying Saint-Maximin 22 yards out and Trippier’s free-kick gave Ederson little chance.

Haaland blasted City back into it from close range with 29 minutes remaining and should have helped himself to a second three minutes later, but was denied by Pope’s legs.

City were back on terms, however, seconds later when De Bruyne picked out Silva’s run with an inch-perfect through-ball and he made no mistake.

Updated: August 21, 2022, 8:17 PM