Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Summary

  1. Guzan mistake lets in Aguero for opener
  2. Kolarov nets free-kick, Cleverley replies from 20 yards
  3. Sanchez equalises with hooked volley
  4. Fernandinho restores City's lead

Live Reporting

By Mike Henson

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Right, that is us for now.

All today's reports - including Watford's rise to the Premier League - are on the

BBC Football pages for you.

You are bound to have missed something. Get stuck in.

Christian Benteke
Getty Images

Even when he doesn't score, Christian Benteke unsettles an opposition defence to create chance for others.

The Belgian had 15 aerial duels - City's Martin Demichelis with 10 was the only other player on either side who got even close - and won 73% of them.

Three shots, one on target and tireless work-rate.

There are not many, or any perhaps, better lone frontmen in the Premier League.

Player reaction

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Tom Cleverley
PA

Aston Villa Tom Cleverley: "I'm devastated. I thought the way we played deserved something today. I thought for much of the game we were the better side, but we were just a bit sloppy at times. We can take confidence from it and hopefully we can do the job next week.

"We can't let our heads drop. If we keep performing like we have against Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham in the last three games, we'll be alright."

Manager reaction

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Man City

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini: "Today we didn't play as well, but we had the spirit and fight to win in the last five minutes despite their late equaliser.

"The results are always more important than the performances, but I think that we normally play well, today we showed the spirit and the belief that perhaps we have not had in other games when we have had more possession.

"I was not satisfied with the way we played today, but sometimes you need different things to win games.

On the late offside decision against Christian Benteke: "I think that we had two offside ourselves that were wrong. "

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

And here is the man himself. Manuel Pellegrini, silver mane looking very bouffant, is out to face the media.

Vote

Earlier, we asked you if Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini would still be in charge at the Etihad Stadium next season. The results are in... and 70% of you said no. Yes? Just 30% of you. Thanks for voting.

Join the debate at #bbcfootball

Nick Harris: Nath B, had Guzan not made that howler we should have won that game. Never deserved to lose. Given to come in next game

Luke: City are a poor team, poor support and a deluded board. Why increase capacity when even cheap tickets cant fill a the stadium

Doron Klemer: Someone please remind linesmen that 'benefit of the doubt' goes to the attacker? Onside decisions should never be given offside

Manager reaction

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Aston Villa

Aston Villa's Tim Sherwood speaking to BBC Sport: "I thought we controlled the game and there were lots of positives, but no points to take from it.

"I could see from where I was that Christian Benteke was onside and I think it was a penalty and a red card for Joe Hart.

"After a poor start, the team continued to believe we could play through midfield. I was satisfied with the performance but I can't be satisfied with the decisions that cost us points here.

"I thought that we outplayed them. You think we can get relegated playing like that? You are having a laugh aren't you?"

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Here comes Tim Sherwood, standing to attention for the television cameras...

Text us on 81111

Jamie an Arsenal fan in Lincoln: Don't worry villa the road is good for you guys ahead. Your team is rebirthed and played man city off the pitch

James, a Chelsea fan: Nice to see Watford back in the big time, they were a match for us in the FA Cup this season and their fans were class as well.

James: I agree with James W. The last 2 seasons Liverpool have been worlds apart from the football we were playing under Dalglish and Hodgson. As a season ticket holder I've seen the transformation. A really decent striker required and must stick with Rogers.

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

You're right Sean. The whole game hinged on that late call from Mike Dean and his assistant.

It looked on the replay that Christian Benteke was in line as he was played in on goal late on with the scores level.

The flag went up for offside as Joe Hart came out and appeared to foul Benteke.

A minute later the ball was in the net at the other end from Fernandinho.

That was a teeth-kicking 60 seconds for Villa.

'We needed that'

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart: "We needed that. It means the world to us to win games. We'd like to be in the hunt for the title, that's not the case but we need to cement a place in the Champions League.

Joe Hart
PA

"Sometimes you come and you don't get there. That's the life of the goalkeeper. We want to finish as high as we can. Second place is in our grasp."

Join the debate at #bbcfootball

Nath B: No hard feelings for Brad. Villa can be proud of that - they could even have won it. A draw would have been a fair reflection.

Sean: Villa should of been 3-2 up before Man City even had that corner. Shock, Top 4 side benefits from an appalling decision again.

FULL-TIME

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

Joe Hart comes a long, long way and just about makes a decent punch to clear from a late Villa free-kick. All hands to the pump for City in defence.

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa

This game was meandering up a cul-de-sac on the hour. The last 30 minutes have been helter-skelter entertainment.

Four minutes of injury time.

GOAL

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa - Fernandinho

Fernandinho
Getty Images

Christian Benteke was wrongly called offside when clean through at one end and just moments later, City break forward to snatch the lead.

A penalty box chaos and it is Fernandinho who reacts best in the game of pinball, sweeping home a volley.

Surely game over?

PENALTY APPEAL

Man City 2-2 Aston Villa

Jesus Navas has a rasper blocked at close range. Up shoot City hands claiming a penalty for a handball from Fabian Delph. No dice.

GOAL

Man City 2-2 Aston Villa - Carlos Sanchez

Carlos Sanchez
Getty Images

Well, well, well.

Aston Villa have kept plugging away and they have their leveller. Joe Hart's weak punch is returned with interest as Carlos Sanchez volleys first time into an unguarded net.

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa

Aston Villa's fans are singing louder, but as it stands this weekend is going to see them sucked back towards the relegation sinkhole.

Just two points between them and the drop.

SUBSTITUTION

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa

Wilfried Bony is going to stretch his legs in the final 10 minutes of so. Sergio Aguero heads off to the bench.

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa

Kieran Richardson lets fly from distance. He has got a cannon of a left peg and Joe Hart had to watch it all the way into his gloves with Christian Benteke loitering for any follow-up.

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa

Fabian Delph is brought down by a trip from Jesus Navas. This is a decent spot for a delivery out on the left wing...

...Christian Benteke has strayed offside though.

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa

Manuel Pellegrini's brow furrows a little more. There is a deep tread on that forehead now.

His team look like they may be in a sticky situation against a Villa side who sniff a point. It is in situations like this that they could do with injured captain Vincent Kompany's leadership.

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa

At 2-1 down, Aston Villa look like a totally different side from the one who were 1-0 adrift.

Joe Hart had to be quick off his line to shut down the angle on Charles N'Zogbia. The Aston Villa man balloons a shot well over from 30 yards shortly after.

Tim Sherwood is frantically signalling on the sidelines, trying to stir up more energy in his side.

GOAL

Man City 2-1 Aston Villa - Tom Cleverley

Tom Cleverley
Getty Images

It seemed like game over. Maybe it is now game on.

Joe Hart attempts to barge through a clutch of players to claim a cross and gets only a faint paw on it. The ball breaks to Tom Cleverley on the edge and a bouncing bomb of a shot worms its way past an out-of-position Hart.

That is Cleverley's first Premier League goal since December 2013 - against Aston Villa for Manchester United.

GOAL

Man City 2-0 Aston Villa - Aleksandar Kolorov

Brad Guzan
Reuters

Pinpoint. Nasa couldn't have plotted a better trajectory to take that ball into the net.

Aleksandar Kolorov steps up and strokes a perfect curling free-kick into the bottom corner from 22 yards.

YELLOW CARD

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Ashley Westwood clipped David Silva late and Mike Dean clocks it. The referee let play run before pulling the Villa man over to receive his yellow card.

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Jesus Navas comes motoring away from a bit of midfield mess with the ball as his feet.

Aston Villa briefly look stretched with Sergio Aguero and James Milner making forward runs, but they get back in position quick enough to shut down the space.

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Where's the shout?

Martin Demichelis jumps to head behind for a Villa corner when Pablo Zabaleta was better positioned behind him.

The Argentines are not made to reflect any further on that though as Villa fail to make anything of the set-piece.

SUBSTITUTION

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

James Milner is stripped and ready to go on the sidelines. He will be Manchester City's second substitute.

Frank Lampard makes way.

PENALTY APPEAL

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Sergio Aguero is giving referee Mike Dean the labrador eyes, pleading for a penalty.

The Argentine certainly had Jores Okore's hands on his shoulders as he attempted to break into the box and get on the end of Jesus Navas's pull-back.

Was it enough to send him sprawling like he did though?

YELLOW CARD

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

City's David Silva picks up the first yellow card of the game for a foul on Fabian Delph.

Text us on 81111

Alan, Manchester: What is it with this City side? So much talent on display yet we only see glimpses of it. Aguero, Toure, erm....oh I'm struggling. That's why.

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Top of the table
BBC

As it stands, Manchester City are up to second by the way.

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Manchester City have emerged with more purpose than they showed at the end of the first half.

Sergio Aguero is off on a slaloming run which is only ended when a mob of Villa defenders gang together to block his way.

KICK-OFF

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

We are back under way.

SUBSTITUTION

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Yaya Toure
PA

A half-time change with Yaya Toure off and Fernandinho on for the hosts.

Join the debate at #bbcfootball

Adam Ben: @AVFCOfficial playing very well now! shame brad guzan gave man city that goal!

Ashley Tezoo: Villa offering very little so far at the Etihad, but Jack Grealish's net worth has probably risen to around £50m by now #Hype

Man City 1-0 Aston Villa

Jesus Navas
Opta

Jesus Navas has touched the ball more often than any other Manchester City player in the first half - 44 times.