Manchester City did an excellent job to fight back and grab a point against a Sunderland team that outplayed them for about 75 minutes, but they're still falling behind Manchester United in the race for the Premier League title. They'll get a little confidence boost from their comeback, but their 3-3 draw still represents two points dropped.
Sebastian Larsson opened the scoring in the 31st minute, aided by some very poor defending. Picking up a ball from Stephane Sessegnon, Larsson was given tons of time and space on the edge of the penalty area to take a shot, and he capitalized by finishing with a well-placed low shot to the near post from 20 yards out.
City would pull level in slightly controversial fashion. Craig Gardner gave away a penalty in the 42nd minute for a foul on Edin Dzeko, but the big striker started going down before there was any contact and initiated the contact himself. Mario Balotelli stepped up and converted the penalty to make it 1-1. They wouldn't stay level long, though. Just before the halftime whistle, in the fourth minute of first half stoppage time, Nicklas Bendtner headed in a Sessegnon cross to give his team the lead.
Sunderland would extend their lead in impressive fashion in the 55th minute, with Larsson adding a second goal. Bendtner provided the assist with a precision low cross that slid perfectly between Joe Hart and the City defense to Larsson, who had a simple tap-in finish.
In a fashion that was very uncharacteristic for Martin O'Neill's sides, they fell apart and allowed City to score twice in less than two minutes to snatch a point from the game and avoid embarrassment. Balotelli scored an absolute stunner in the 85th minute to get city back into the game and Aleksandar Kolarov matched him for quality with a strike from outside the box right after the ensuing kickoff.
Every point is valuable, but City will absolutely see this as two points dropped, despite the excellent comeback. Manchester United currently leads the league by two points with one game in hand.