Savic tackle costs Man City dear

Savic tackle costs Man City dear

Manchester City suffered a third loss in four matches as Steven Gerrard earned Liverpool a 1-0 victory in the first leg of their League Cup semifinal at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday.

Captain Gerrard, who has just returned from a long layoff with a groin injury, clinically converted a 13th minute penalty to put seven-time winners Liverpool in the driving seat for the second leg at Anfield.

City improved after the break following a woeful first half but were still well short of the form that has propelled them to the top of the Premier League.

City, with captain Vincent Kompany suspended after his red card in the 3-2 home defeat by United, powerhouse Yaya Toure on international duty and playmaker David Silva injured, never got going as Liverpool dominated early on.

Keeper Joe Hart had to make two fine saves in the opening minutes, once from Gerrard and then from a deflected Stewart Downing effort, but he was beaten from the spot when Gerrard drilled his shot low into the corner after Stefan Savic’s clumsy tackle on Daniel Agger in the penalty area.

Mancini was clearly unhappy with what he was witnessing and he substituted a disgruntled Mario Balotelli before the break, the Italian striker strutting down the tunnel after being replaced by Samir Nasri.

Spurs stay in touch
Tottenham Hotspur continued their push for a first top flight league title since 1961 with a 2-0 win over Everton on Wednesday to put them level on points with second-placed champions Manchester United and three behind City.

Goals in either half from Aaron Lennon and Benoit Assou-Ekotto lifted the north London club to 45 points from 20 games, eight clear of fourth-placed Chelsea, who are a point ahead of Tottenham's rivals Arsenal.