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Manchester City's midfielder Mateo Kovacic vies with Liverpool's midfielder Wataru Endo during the English Premier League football match at Anfield in Liverpool on Sunday. Image Credit: AFP

London: Liverpool and Manchester City shared a pulsating 1-1 draw on Sunday in their title showdown to leave Arsenal on top of the Premier League.

City took the lead through John Stones’ first-half strike, but Alexis Mac Allister equalised with a penalty soon after the interval at Anfield.

The result was exactly what Arsenal wanted as the Gunners retained first place, a position they earned when Kai Havertz’s late header clinched a dramatic 2-1 win against Brentford on Saturday.

Arsenal are above second-placed Liverpool on goal difference, with a +7 advantage, while champions City are one point adrift of the top two, with all three teams having 10 games left.

In a title race for the ages, Arsenal will travel to City for a potentially decisive clash in both sides’ next league game on March 31.

City had drawn first blood at Anfield with a clever set-piece routine in the 23rd minute.

Kevin De Bruyne hit a low corner that Stones met at the near post with a close-range finish.

Liverpool levelled in the 50th minute when City defender Nathan Ake played a suicidal back-pass that was intercepted by Darwin Nunez.

City keeper Ederson rushed off his line in a desperate bid to avert the danger, but only succeeded in catching Nunez with a reckless lunge.

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Liverpool's Egyptian striker Mohamed Salah warms up on the sideline. Image Credit: AFP

High challenge

Mac Allister calmly stroked the spot-kick past Ederson and in a frantic finale, City’s Jeremy Doku hit the post and then escaped another penalty appeal for his high challenge on Liverpool’s goalscorer.

An already seismic showdown was given extra significance by Jurgen Klopp’s last top-flight meeting with City boss Pep Guardiola after his bombshell announcement that he will quit Liverpool at the end of this season.

After jousting for supremacy throughout their reigns, it was fitting that Klopp held Guardiola in a warm embrace at the final whistle of a clash that leaves the destiny of the title still in the balance.

Ange Postecoglou’s side arrived at Villa Park knowing defeat to their fourth-placed rivals would have been potentially fatal to their bid to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

But the north Londoners rose to the challenge with a second-half goal spree in the rain-soaked West Midlands.

Jurgen Klopp meanwhile benched Mohamed Salah for the crucial tie. The 31-year-old came off hte bench on his return to the squad against Sparta Prague on Thursday and was expected to play in the important match against City.