Cole Palmer returned to haunt Manchester City, as his last-gasp penalty rescued an astonishing 4-4 draw against the Premier League leaders in one of the season’s most exciting games.
Palmer scored in the last seconds after Rodri’s 86th-minute strike appeared to send City home with all three points at Stamford Bridge.
Palmer was in a good mood after City manager Pep Guardiola decided to move the developing star to Chelsea in a surprise £42 million ($51 million) deal in September.
Guardiola said that Palmer, who joined City at the age of six, refused his offer of increased playing time this season in an attempt to keep him.
The youth made his old boss pay in the most dramatic way possible, having the ultimate word in an incredible confrontation with numerous story twists.
City wasted three leads and had to come from behind three times before being forced to settle for a point that keeps them one point ahead of second-placed Liverpool and third-placed Arsenal.
Thiago Silva equalized after Erling Haaland’s contentious penalty put City ahead.
Raheem Sterling gave Chelsea the lead against his former club, only for Manuel Akanji to equalize at the end of a breathless first half.
After the halftime, Haaland scored his 17th goal of the season, before Nicolas Jackson of Chelsea equalized.
Rodri appeared to have delivered the killing blow with four minutes remaining, but Palmer’s penalty added a sting to the tale.
When City took the lead after 25 minutes, it set off an intense contest.
Haaland was brought down by Marc Cucurella as he attempted to receive Bernardo Silva’s cross inside the six-yard box.
Haaland appeared to tug on Cucurella’s shirt before the Chelsea defender’s contract was signed.
Mauricio Pochettino, the manager of Chelsea, was enraged that play was not stopped prior to the cross for a probable foul by Jeremy Doku on Reece James and Moises Caicedo as the Chelsea players attempted to head clear.
Haaland muffled the screams of Chelsea fans as he calmly sent Sanchez the wrong way from the spot.
Chelsea’s anguish was channeled into a passionate response, and they were level four minutes later.
From James’ free kick, Ederson sprinted to his left to perform a great tip-over.
However, after Palmer stopped Haaland’s attempt to mark the Chelsea defender, Silva flicked his header into the far corner from six yards out.
Pochettino’s team took the lead in the 37th minute after Josko Gvardiol fumbled clearing Gallagher’s pass, getting his feet tangled as James pounced with a low cross that Sterling simply tapped in to reward his man of the match performance.
City remained a threat, and weak marking allowed Akanji to head home from Bernardo Silva’s cross in first-half stoppage time, leaving Pochettino fuming.
City took the lead two minutes after the break as Haaland capped off an excellent counterattack.
Sliding in to meet Julian Alvarez’s cross, Haaland bundled the ball over the line with an unintentional deflection off his arm that escaped a VAR review.
Sanchez saved Alvarez’s shot, and the end-to-end drama continued when Palmer’s fantastic run was foiled by Ederson’s save.
Ederson required treatment for an injury moments later, and he was at blame for Chelsea’s 67th-minute equalizer.
Instead of blocking Gallagher’s 20-yard shot, Ederson parried it back to Jackson, who gladly tucked home for his fourth goal in the previous two games.
Rodri scored in the 86th minute, his shot taking a nasty deflection off Silva’s foot and racing past Sanchez.
Palmer, however, had the final say at the conclusion of an amazing afternoon, smashing in his penalty in stoppage time after Armando Broja was tripped by Ruben Dias.