Manchester City revived its title defense by inflicting leader Liverpool’s first defeat 2-1 on Thursday, completing the Premier League’s packed festive program with an engrossing encounter.

Liverpool’s threatened a comeback when Roberto Firmino canceled out Sergio Aguero’s first-half opener but Leroy Sane struck the winner in the 72nd minute.

The title race is wide open again just when it looked like Liverpool was on a smoother path to a first English title in 29 years thanks to City’s back-to-back losses less than two weeks ago.

City has trimmed Liverpool’s lead to four points and reclaimed second place from Tottenham with 17 games of the 38-match season remaining.

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Manchester City's Leroy Sane celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
Manchester City’s Leroy Sane celebrates after scoring his side’s second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
Liverpool's Roberto Firmino, left heads the ball over the line as he scores his sides 1st goal during their English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Ethiad stadium, Manchester England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino, left heads the ball over the line as he scores his sides 1st goal during their English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Ethiad stadium, Manchester England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
Manchester City's Sergio Aguero celebrates after scoring the opening goal of the game during their English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Ethiad stadium, Manchester England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero celebrates after scoring the opening goal of the game during their English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Ethiad stadium, Manchester England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
Manchester City's John Stones, left, clears the ball off the line during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
Manchester City’s John Stones, left, clears the ball off the line during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold, right, and Manchester City's goalkeeper Ederson challenge for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold, right, and Manchester City’s goalkeeper Ederson challenge for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
A supporter holds a poster before the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
A supporter holds a poster before the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Thursday, Jan. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)

Source: The Associated Press

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