Europe

Manchester City defy rivals Liverpool to win Premier League for second time in a row

Manchester City have been crowned Premier League champions – again – after overwhelming Brighton.

Their 4-1 away victory makes them the first team to retain the trophy in a decade.

Their nearest rivals Liverpool also won their final league match against Wolves but finished one point behind the champions in the table.

Speaking after the game, City captain Vincent Kompany said: “I’m so happy for myself but for the team and the fans too, it’s wonderful.

“We were magnificent, we did everything we needed to do… we’ve got an incredible desire to overachieve and now we’re looking forward to the FA Cup final.

“I’m so proud of the guys.”

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola congratulated Liverpool on their season and thanked them for pushing his team further.

“We have to say congratulations to Liverpool as well, and thank you so much, because they helped us to push and increase our standards.

“It’s been an incredible season for us… I think Manchester City has made the standard higher and Liverpool has helped us keep it there.”

It was an anxious start to the afternoon for Sky Blues fans as Liverpool’s Sadio Mane put the Reds ahead 17 minutes into their match. Ten minutes later Brighton’s Glen Murray put the ball in the back of Manchester City’s net.

But there was an instant response from Guardiola’s team with a quickfire brace of goals.

Sergio Aguero nutmegged the Brighton keeper then City doubled their tally with a header from Aymeric Laporte.

City put one hand on the trophy 63 minutes in, after Riyad Mahrez shot from range, hammering the ball into the top-right corner of the goal. Ilkay Gundogan’s goal from a freekick felt like a formality.

In Liverpool’s match Sane added to his team’s lead 80 mins in, making the final score 2-0, but it meant little with the game out of Brighton’s reach.

Liverpool had gone into the game on the back of a sensational Champions League comeback against Barcelona.

And the Reds finish their Premier League season with 97 points, which would have been enough to win the title in every other season except last year’s, when City collected an eye-popping 100.

However, the long campaign is not over for Liverpool as they set their sights on their sixth Champions League title.

Many had billed Sunday’s fixtures as two of the best football managers in the world going head-to-head in what pundits had been calling the best quality Premier League title race ever.

Their teams have been so good they are both more than 20 points ahead of third-placed Chelsea.

The dramatic conclusion to the Premier League caps off a momentous week for English football as Tottenham Hotspur secured a spot in an all-English Champions League final with Liverpool, and Arsenal and Chelsea securing their places in the final of the Europa League.

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