By Andy Hampson, PA
Kyle Walker felt Manchester City had moved a small step closer to retaining their Premier League title after Sunday’s pulsating 2-2 draw with Liverpool.
The champions failed to land a telling blow on their rivals as the Reds twice came from behind in a thrilling clash between the competition’s top two sides at the Etihad Stadium.
Yet in avoiding defeat City at least maintained their slender one-point advantage at the top of the table and, with seven games remaining, their destiny remains in their hands.
— Kyle Walker (@kylewalker2) April 10, 2022
Right-back Walker said: “Of course we want to win every game, especially when people come to our own patch, but it’s very important not to lose the game.
“We can’t lose a game (like this) and then be trailing them because good teams like them don’t drop too many points. You take a point, you move on and they’ve still got to catch us. I feel that it’s a step in the right direction.
“It’s in our hands, we’re still top of the Premier League. That’s an important message we need to hold onto and take into the next couple of games, which are very important.”
The much-hyped contest lived up to its billing as Kevin De Bruyne and Diogo Jota traded goals inside the opening 13 minutes.
Gabriel Jesus restored City’s lead before the break but Sadio Mane levelled again just 47 seconds into the second half.
Both sides had chances to win it but City had the best of them. Raheem Sterling had a strike ruled out after a very tight offside decision by VAR before Riyad Mahrez hit the post late on and chipped over from another gilt-edged opportunity in injury time.
“I think the manager got the tactics and the game plan spot on but it’s one of those games,” said Walker.
“The hardest job in football is putting the ball in the back of the net. Sometimes it comes off and sometimes it doesn’t.
“Now we just have to make sure that come the season we’re still top of the league and we’re lifting that Premier League title that we all want.”
A titanic title race clash! 📈💥 pic.twitter.com/Ekcu3S1ll7
— Manchester City (@ManCity) April 10, 2022
City are not in league action again until they host Brighton on April 20.
Before that they travel to Spain for the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday and then face Liverpool again, in the FA Cup semi-finals, next Saturday.
“These are the games that you want to be involved in,” said Walker. “It’s exciting.”