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De Bruyne ‘proud’ of Man City but slams ‘absurd’ handball rule after Spurs draw

The latest installment of the growing and hugely entertaining rivalry between Manchester City and Spurs ended in a dramatic 2-2 draw at the Etihad today.

Pep Guardiola’s side flew out of the blocks and deservedly went ahead after 20 minutes when Raheem Sterling headed home a sublime Kevin De Bruyne cross.

However, despite the hosts complete and utter domination Spurs soon found themselves level, after an uncharacteristic positional error from City ‘keeper Ederson allowed Argentine attacker Erik Lamela to hit home from the edge of the area.

Reigning Premier League champions City soon wrestled back control and retook the lead 10 minutes before the break, when another trademark De Bruyne delivery was stroked home by Sergio Aguero.

The second period began in much the same way with the home side on top, but City would pay the price for some wasteful finishing when Spurs attacker Lucas Moura came off the bench to head home with his first touch after 56 minutes.

City continued to push and probe and seemed to have won the game after Gabriel Jesus finished smartly from a corner in injury time.

However, just like in the pairs epic Champions League semi-final game last season, City would be denied by VAR, with the goal ruled out due to Aymeric Laporte having handled the ball in the build-up.

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Speaking after the game, City skipper De Bruyne admitted he was proud of his side’s display, although the Belgian doesn’t seem to be a big fan of either VAR or the controversial handball rule.

“It feels weird to have the last-minute goal disallowed but we just have to accept it,” De Bruyne told the BBC.

“I’m old school – I love the flow of the game and the enthusiasm. But if we want to get the game better I’m fine with it, but I learned after the game if the ball touched the Tottenham hand then the goal is disallowed which is absurd.

“I have no issue with the rule – the rule is the rule – but it should be looked at because that situation is crazy.

“Everybody is proud with the way we performed – Spurs got two goals but they only had two chances so they were really clinical. We have to be proud because to play at this level against a team like Tottenham is really good for the rest of the season.

“It’s always more difficult in a big game but we almost totally dominated them. They had some of the ball but it was always their defenders that had the ball which wasn’t an issue for us.”

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