As Crystal Palace grabbed a 2-2 draw at the Etihad Stadium, Michael Olise’s stoppage-time penalty dealt another body blow to Manchester City’s campaign for a fourth consecutive Premier League title.
City led 2-0 entering into the final quarter hour, thanks to Jack Grealish’s third goal in three league games and Rico Lewis’ first goal in England’s top division.
In the 76th minute, however, Kyle Walker switched off as Marc Guehi fired a raking pass down the City. Jeffrey Schlupp crossed for a sliding Jean-Philippe Mateta, following up on his successful penalty conversion against Liverpool the previous weekend.
And an increasingly nervous City, who had already let last-minute leads slip away against Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, were left to repent not putting the game to bed as a frightened Phil Foden pulled down Mateta and Olise did the rest calmly.
Even with City’s recent poor record of hanging onto leads, the dramatic ending felt unexpected from the time Grealish stroked home Foden’s lovely ball and the goal remained after a lengthy VAR review.
Foden, Julian Alvarez, and Josko Gvardiol all had chances as City controlled nearly 74% of the ball before halftime. Palace’s greatest chance came in the 44th minute, when Michael Olise rippled the top of the goal with a free kick after Ederson was cautioned for pulling down a player.
Palace’s greatest chance came after Ederson was cautioned for rashly hauling down Mateta in the 44th minute, when Michael Olise rippled the top of the netting with a free kick – a sample of the collective lack of control to come.
Rodri was called for interfering from an offside position on review after Alvarez whipped in a free kick early in the second quarter.
Palace did not capitalise on their respite, as Grealish and Rodri were both involved in what should have been a game-winning moment for childhood City supporter Lewis.
Guardiola’s team is heading to the Club World Cup in Saudi Arabia with their domestic crown on the line. They might be 12 points behind leaders Liverpool by the time they play their next Premier League game at Goodison Park on December 27.