BRIGHTON, England (AP) — Manchester City paid heavily for the 10th-minute sending-off of Joao Cancelo as the newly crowned Premier League champions squandered a two-goal lead to lose 3-2 at Brighton on Tuesday.
Potentially more worrying for City was the sight of key midfielder Ilkay Gundogan coming off with a leg injury in the 56th minute, 11 days before the team plays in the Champions League final against Chelsea.
City manager Pep Guardiola said Gundogan was “injured a little bit” after a kick to the knee.
Gundogan had already given City a second-minute lead at the Amex Stadium when Cancelo, the right back, was shown a straight red after losing control of the ball and bringing down Danny Welbeck. He will miss City’s last league game of the season, at home to Everton on Sunday, but it won’t affect his availability for the Champions League final.
The visitors coped fine with 10 men for the rest of the first half and Phil Foden doubled City’s lead in the 48th minute by finishing off a surging run down the left by poking a shot into the bottom corner.
Then came Brighton’s fightback in front of a crowd of 10,000 spectators, who were allowed to attend the game following an easing of lockdown restrictions by the British government.
Leandro Trossard pulled a goal back within two minutes after dribbling into the penalty box, twice shaping to shoot, and then finally smashing a rising shot into the corner.
Adam Webster equalized with a header from Pascal Gross’ cross — for his first goal of the season — and fellow defender Dan Burn popped up to seal a famous win for Brighton in the 76th by scrambling in a shot after his initial effort was saved.
Gundogan came off with the score at 1-1 after a foul by Adam Lallana, though Guardiola suggested the midfielder already had issues before that.
“He started the second half and had niggles in his muscle because he couldn’t run properly,” Guardiola said.
City clinched a third league title in four years last week.
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