The moment that made Juan Mata angry with Raheem Sterling during Man City 3-1 United

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League

Anthony Taylor was the referee in charge of Sunday’s clash between Manchester City and Manchester United at the Etihad Stadium - an appointment which raised plenty of eyebrows in the days leading up to the match.

Some Man City fans were unhappy with the appointment because they believed the Wythenshawe-born match official to be a secret United fan.

However, it later transpired that the 40-year-old ref is actually a season-ticket holder at National League club Altrincham.

After all of the pre-match nonsense, Taylor will be relieved that people weren’t talking about his performance following the full-time whistle.

He did award United a penalty just before the hour-mark for a foul by Ederson on Romelu Lukaku - but even the biggest conspiracy theorist would agree it was a deserved spot-kick.

Manchester derbies can be extremely tough to referee but Taylor only dished out two yellow cards over the course of the 90 minutes: one to Bernardo Silva and another to Luke Shaw.

He almost had another issue to sort out just before full-time, however, involving Raheem Sterling and Juan Mata.

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League

Mata, one of the nicest and most mild-mannered people in football, was left furious with Sterling for showboating moments earlier.

This video, from the 93rd minute, shows Sterling executing a couple of step-overs as the clock ticked down to full-time.

Marouane Fellaini eventually made the tackle but City were awarded the corner.

Watch the footage here…

As Sterling went to take the corner, he received an earful from Mata - basically for taking the p***.


Mata pointed and wagged his finger at Sterling, who reacted with a look of disgust on his face.


Here’s how football fans on Twitter reacted to the incident…

You can certainly understand why Mata was frustrated in that moment, but Sterling had every right to try and waste a few seconds by using his skill.

Mata is an extremely level-headed guy usually but you don’t scale the heights he has during his career without being fiercely competitive.

The result of Sunday’s derby leaves United eighth in the Premier League table, now 12 points behind league-leaders City, who move back above Liverpool into pole position.

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