Stoke City’s Victor Moses (centre) vying with Manchester City’s Samir Nasri (right) and Yaya Toure during their EPL match in Manchester … on Saturday.
| credits: AFP
Stoke City registered their first Premier League victory in Manchester as Mame Biram Diouf’s fine solo effort stunned the champions.
The Senegal international and former United striker raced 70 yards before slotting under Joe Hart.
The hosts could have had a late penalty but Yaya Toure was booked for diving.
Stoke had lost all 12 previous league matches at the Etihad Stadium and Old Trafford and manager Mark Hughes will savour this victory at his former club.
The odds were stacked against the visitors who had not even scored at Manchester City in the Premier League.
By contrast, Manuel Pellegrini’s men had failed to hit the net in just one of their last 70 home matches and the Chilean started with Sergio Aguero, who had taken just 23 seconds to score off the bench against Liverpool, up front.
The Potters had failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 12 league matches but a resolute performance from Hughes’s side saw them do just that and Diouf’s second-half strike capped a perfect day for the disbelieving away support, although Hart should have done better with the goal.
Stoke have embraced a more open, passing game under Hughes, but it was the old organisational qualities often displayed under previous manager Tony Pulis that saw them home.
They are looking to improve on last season’s impressive ninth-placed finish and after a home defeat at the hands of Aston Villa and a point against 10-man Hull City, this shock victory will raise expectations of doing so.
In a tetchy first half, the well-organised Potters could and probably should have had a penalty when Aleksandar Kolarov clumsily tripped Diouf.
Yaya Toure went closest for an unusually subdued home side, clipping Kolarov’s pull back against the bar shortly before half-time.
Diouf, who spent three years at Old Trafford, seized his moment on 58 minutes when he picked up David Silva’s cleared cross outside his own area.
The 26-year-old held off Kolarov and skipped past substitute Fernandinho before beating Hart at his near post.
Diouf could have made it two moments later but was inches away from connecting with Peter Odemwingie’s cross with the goal at his mercy.
The home side’s misery was compounded late on when Lee Mason deemed that Toure had dived in the area and showed the Ivorian a yellow card as the home team claimed a penalty.
Pellegrini will also have to check on the fitness of summer signing Fernando, who limped off on 38 minutes.