By Sam Canavan, edited for online by Nicholas Chin
Remarkable scenes flowed through Manchester overnight on the final day of the English Premier League, as Manchester City clinched the title with a thrilling comeback 3-2 win over relegation threatened Queens Park Rangers.
After 44 years in the abyss and an almighty 11th hour comeback, Manchester City finally reigned supreme as the EPL champions.
City looked dead and buried, trailing Rangers 2-1 with only four minutes of injury time left in a game they had to win to secure the Premier League title.
However, against all odds, substitute Edin Dzeko scored an equaliser for the Sky Blues before team mate Sergio Aguero struck home the winner in the dying seconds to give his side their first EPL triumph in more than four decades.
The winner in the final minute brought tears and cheers around Manchester’s Etihad Stadium, as fans jumped the barriers and poured onto the field.
Football Brisbane general manager Reuben Robertson says it was the greatest EPL final day in living memory and will do wonders for soccer in Queensland.
“It’s just incredible this game, it has more twists and turns that you could ever imagine,” he said.
“Who would have thought 2-1 down in the 90th minute and win 3-2 and snatch the title in that dying minute. It really does epitamise how great this game is”.
Manchester City’s almost inconceivable victory was a crushing blow to their cross-town rivals, Manchester United.
The Red Devils were convinced they had won back-to-back titles after beating Sunderland, but their jubilation soon turned to misery when the news of City’s remarkable comeback filtered through to the Stadium of Light.
Manchester United has the biggest fan base of any team in the world, so the despair was widespread.
City fan Nathan Smith said United fans were heartbroken at a popular Brisbane pub.
“I was surrounded by 30 crying middle aged United fans who had been gloating the whole time until about 10 seconds at 2:05 in the morning,” Mr Smith said.
“It was a great night!”
While the season is always remembered for who hoists the trophy, the battle at the bottom can be just as enthralling.
The bottom three teams are relegated from the EPL top flight; this year Bolton, Blackburn and Wolverhampton, a system which ensures every match has meaning.
The Punch sports columnist Anthony Sharwood is a big fan.
“It just adds a whole lot of theatre at the other end of the table and we lack that in our codes,” Mr Sharwood said.
Sharwood says the A-League could benefit from a similar system where the lowest-placed team every year is relegated and a state League winning side promoted.
“I think (relegation) would work,” Mr sharwood said.
“I think it would add a lot of excitment to a competition that is still struggling to find its spot in our sporting landscape”.