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Football
Tevez bags City draw and 100th English goal
Manchester City come from behind twice to secure draw with Liverpool as Arsenal and Stoke also share the spoils.
Last Modified: 26 Aug 2012 18:26
Tevez pounces on a mistake from Liverpool in a game where City were uncharacteristically on the backfoot [EPA]

Martin Skrtel, scorer of Liverpool's opening goal, gifted Premier League champions Manchester City their second equaliser, and a point, in an absorbing 2-2 draw at Anfield on Sunday.

The Liverpool defender had performed superbly until the 80th minute when, under pressure from Edin Dzeko, he inexplicably played the ball back directly to Carlos Tevez, who rounded Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina and slotted in his 100th goal in English football to share the points.

But the consolation for Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers, still searching for his first league victory since taking charge of the Reds, was that this was a much improved display following last week's 3-1 loss to West Bromwich Albion.

Skrtel opened the scoring with a powerful and unstoppable header from a perfectly-delivered right-wing Steven Gerrard corner in the 34th minute, a goal which was thoroughly deserved given the enterprising manner in which Rodgers's
team had undertaken their daunting meeting with the champions.

"This is the time to finish conceding two goals every game"

Man City boss Roberto Mancini

Yaya Toure pulled City level in the 63rd minute but it took the home team just three more to regain the lead through a magnificently-struck Luis Suarez free-kick after Jack Rodwell had been harshly judged to have handled as he blocked a Gerrard shot.

It was a dangerous position, some 22 yards from goal, and Suarez, who had looked low on confidence to that point, needed no second invitation to curl a superb strike around the City wall and beyond England goalkeeper Joe Hart into the bottom right-hand corner.

The Reds' goalscoring hero turned villian when Skrtel's moment of indecision helped make things all square again with Carlos Tevez scoring his 100th Premier League goal .

Liverpool substitute striker Andy Carroll might have secured the three points in the other direction in the closing minutes, however, as he rose to meet a Suarez cross and saw his header cleared off the line by Vincent Kompany.

"This is the time to finish conceding two goals every game,'' said Man City manager Roberto Mancini. 

"But we have taken one point when we went down two times."

Arsenal and Stoke produced a goalless draw at the Britannia Stadium, with Olivier Giroud coming closest to scoring forthe London side in the final minute of the game.

Giroud collected a pass from substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain 40 yardsfrom goal on the left and tried to lob Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, withthe shot glancing the roof of the net.

Stoke manager Tony Pulis gave United States international Geoff Cameron his debut in the center of midfield while fellow offseason signing Michael Kightly also started.

Midfielder Santi Cazorla produced another lively display for Arsene Wenger's side, trying his luck with a number of long range attempts, while Stoke had a goal for Jonathan Walters correctly ruled out for offside in the first half.

496

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