Erling Haaland scored a penalty with virtually the last kick of the game to clinch a 2-1 victory for Manchester City at 10 (opens in a new tab) against Fulham (opens in a new tab).
The Premier League’s top scorer had missed the last two games with a foot problem but was back on the bench as Pep Guardiola’s side sought 10 from 10 home wins in all competitions this season.
And the champions got off to a routine start at the Etihad Stadium, with Julian Alvarez putting them ahead after 17 minutes with his second goal in the space of four days.
But things got worse just eight minutes later when Joao Cancelo was sent off for a last-man foul on Harry Wilson in the box. Andreas Pereira sent in the resulting penalty to level the scores at 1-1.
It looked like that was how it was going to stay, especially after Fulham had a big slack midway through the second half as Haaland – introduced just after the hour mark – had a goal scored for off- game by VAR.
With their resident goalscoring machine on the pitch, however, there was always some inevitability to the outcome – and deep, deep in stoppage time City had the chance to snatch all three points: Kevin De Bruyne was knocked down Antonee Robinson – and more took a step forward in Haaland to score his 18th league goal of an extraordinary campaign.
Victory puts City a point clear of Arsenal (opens in a new tab) – who faces Chelsea (opens in a new tab) at Stamford Bridge during the Sunday lunchtime kick-off.