Arsenal(opens in new tab) will sit top of the Premier League as the season pauses for the World Cup(opens in new tab), after Manchester City(opens in new tab) suffered a surprise defeat at home to Brentford(opens in new tab).
Ivan Toney – two days after being left out of Gareth Southgate’s England(opens in new tab) squad for Qatar – bagged a brace, including a 98th-minute winner, as the Bees stunned the champions.
The result saw City drop points at the Etihad Stadium for the first time in any competition since April’s 2-2 league draw with Liverpool(opens in new tab), ending a 16-match winning streak.
City entered this game having dramatically beaten Fulham with 10 men last time out in the league through Erling Haaland’s 95th-minute penalty
But the Norwegian goal machine – who will now be put on standby mode for the next five weeks, wasn’t able to rescue his side on Saturday – drawing a blank for just the fifth time in his City career.
Brentford led after 16 minutes, Toney converting a header at the back post – and the visitors faced near constant pressure from there on in as they tried to hold on for a famous victory.
When Phil Foden smashed in the equaliser in first-half stoppage time, it looked like City would – as they have done on such a routine basis in the past – recover to win comfortably, but Thomas Frank’s side had other ideas.
In the dying embers of a contest in which they’d seen countless VAR penalty reviews correctly go in their favour, with Pep Guardiola’s side pushing for a winner of their own, Brentford broke in numbers and there was Toney to turn in Josh Dasilva’s low cross in front of a delirious travelling support.
The Bees have now beaten both Manchester clubs in 2021/22, having memorably thrashed United 4-0 at home on the second weekend of the campaign.
Arsenal travel to Wolves for the Saturday night kick-off, where victory will take them five points clear of City heading into the World Cup.