McCarthy strike sinks City
Rovers unbeaten in four
Last Updated: 02/09/07 6:04pm
McCarthy: Winning goal
Blackburn maintained their unbeaten start to the season with a 1-0 victory over Manchester City.
Benni McCarthy settled the contest early on with a close-range strike after 13 minutes.
The match was somewhat overshadowed by referee Mike Dean, who dished out six yellow and two red cards.
Rovers were the first side to lose a man when Tugay was shown a second booking for a tug on Dietmar Hamann.
Richard Dunne was dismissed for City shortly after, as Sven Goran Eriksson's side suffered back-to-back league defeats.
BreakthroughMcCarthy made the breakthrough in the 13th minute when David Bentley swung in a corner from the left that was met by Christopher Samba at the far post.
He picked out Roque Santa Cruz, only for Kasper Schmeichel to parry his header straight into the path of McCarthy, who scored from close range.
It was the South African striker's first league goal of the season to add to his two in the Intertoto Cup. He scored 24 in all competitions last term.
Blackburn almost extended their lead when David Dunn got on the end of a Bentley free-kick only to head over the bar.
Then Stephen Warnock found Santa Cruz at the back post but Schmeichel got a good hand to the ball.
Blackburn were dominating the game and Bentley was showing why he had been called up into the England squad.
City supporters had something to cheer when Emile Mpenza won a free-kick off Brett Emerton. Elano, though, sent his effort into the wall.
Blackburn almost added a second in first-half stoppage-time when Bentley picked out Morten Gamst Pedersen but the Norwegian's effort was blocked by the goalkeeper.
Half-timeSanta Cruz then got on the end of a through ball from McCarthy in the 50th minute. It seemed a clear chance but the Paraguay international got the ball stuck under his feet, much to City's relief.
The visitors hit back and won a free-kick 20 yards out in the 53rd minute. Brazilian midfielder Elano took it, only to send his effort narrowly wide of the post.
Blackburn were reduced to 10 men in the 55th minute when Tugay was sent off after picking up two yellow cards in two minutes.The Turkish playmaker was dismissed for challenges on Mpenza and Dietmar Hamann.
City immediately raised the tempo and Blackburn boss Hughes took action by drafting in defender Andre Ooijer after 63 minutes for McCarthy.
However, Sven-Goran Eriksson's side went down to 10 men in the 65th minute when skipper Dunne was sent off after a lunge on Santa Cruz.
Samba should have at least hit the target two minutes later after Pedersen swung in a corner but sent a free header high over the bar.It was clear chance, with little to choose between the teams.
Blackburn were carving out the better chances and Emerton raced away in the 72nd minute but Schmeichel parried the ball to safety.
Golden chanceTwo minutes later, Emerton delivered a good ball into the area and found Pedersen. However, he tried to be too elaborate and sent a weak lob from close range into the arms of the goalkeeper.
Hughes sent on Matt Derbyshire for Santa Cruz with four minutes remaining. While he was unable to extend their lead, the Blackburn supporters went home happy after another positive display from the team.
|Blackburn Rovers||Team Statistics||Manchester City|
|1||1st Half Goals||0|
|8||Shots on Target||2|
|6||Shots off Target||3|
Barclays Premier League
|5||West Ham United||18||31|
|15||West Bromwich Albion||18||17|
|16||Queens Park Rangers||18||17|