By Phil McNulty
Chief football writer, at Goodison Park
David Silva (right) was City's first half inspiration
Everton brought Manchester City's march towards the Champions League to an abrupt halt with a stirring comeback at Goodison Park.
Yaya Toure's first-half goal appeared to set City on course for a win that would have virtually guaranteed a place in the top four as they exerted total domination over the Toffees.
But the Merseysiders turned the game on its head in a fiercely-contested second half that concluded with manager David Moyes making it seven wins in his last eight Premier League games against City.
Former City defender Sylvain Distin headed Everton's equaliser from Mikel Arteta's free-kick after 65 minutes with goalkeeper Joe Hart at fault - and as Roberto Mancini's men rocked under increasing pressure, Leon Osman rose spectacularly to beat City captain Vincent Kompany and head the winner seven minutes later.
Mancini lost his cool on several occasions in the closing stages, undoubtedly angry at his team's failure to cash in on their previous superiority which brought missed chances from Patrick Vieira and Edin Dzeko.
Everton, however, deserve huge credit for the manner in which they recovered from a dispiriting first half to extend their strangehold on City in recent seasons.
Frustrations threatened to get out of hand after the final whistle, with Everton captain Phil Neville held back by referee Phil Dowd, who was also in heated discussion with City coach Brian Kidd as tempers boiled over.
Second-half display delights Moyes
Goodison Park revelled in the triumph, reserving special attention for former defender Joleon Lescott, who left Everton for Eastlands in an acrimonious £24m move in August 2009.
City's meeting with Tottenham at Eastlands on Tuesday now assumes added significance while Everton once again demonstrated what dangerous opponents they can be - a fact no doubt noted by Chelsea coach Carlo Ancelotti, who brings his side to Goodison on the final day of the season.
Mancini left Mario Balotelli and Adam Johnson on the bench - but David Silva's wonderful elegance and creativity meant they were not missed in the first 45 minutes when eventual defeat must have been far from City's minds.
Silva even drew applause from Everton's fans for a stunning piece of instant control, which he followed with a shot across goalkeeper Tim Howard that flashed inches wide.
All the visitors' good early work revolved around Silva, and Vieira was guilty of wasting another chance fashioned by the Spain international, shooting wildly over the top when it seemed certain he would score.
Toure was not about to miss out when Silva slipped past Distin and carved open the home side's defence once more after 28 minutes, finishing emphatically high past Howard after being played in by another perfect angled pass.
Everton's only serious response was a header from midfield man Jack Rodwell that flew just wide and Moyes made an alteration the situation demanded at the interval, removing defender Tony Hibbert in favour of striker Jermaine Beckford.
It was still City dictating affairs just after the break, though, with Howard plunging at the feet of Toure after he was sent clear by Silva, and Dzeko's header dropping inches off target with the Toffees keeper scrambling.
The Merseysiders attempted to unsettle Mancini's men with a more physical approach, which went too far. Rodwell was shown a yellow card by referee Dowd for a reckless lunge on Nigel de Jong. But Kompany was also cautioned for becoming involved in the ensuing melee.
Dzeko fired narrowly wide for City as they attempted to put daylight between themselves and an increasingly confident Everton, who made a change by replacing Rodwell with Tim Cahill.
Mancini bemused after Everton defeat
The equaliser came instantly, although Cahill was not involved, Distin's header from Arteta's free-kick sneaking past Hart, who should have done so much better.
And with Goodison Park rocking, the home side completed their recovery with a second seven minutes later - a goal of bravery and quality from Osman.
The little man was giving away height, weight and reach to Kompany but he soared magnificently above the defender to send a flying header over Hart.
Osman suffered a blow to the head in the collision but was able to recover and was afforded a standing ovation from Everton's elated supporters.
City were stunned and almost fell further behind when Beckford stole in on Victor Anichebe's cross only to be denied by Hart's crucial block at the near post.
Everton were never in serious trouble after that - forcing City to wait to stamp their passport into next season's Champions League.
Everton manager David Moyes:
"They bossed the game and we never laid a glove on them.
"We were fortunate to go in at half-time 1-0 down.
"We changed the system round a little bit at half-time and I don't know if it was the system but we got closer to people, looked more attacking and were a bigger threat.
"We set out to try to contain Man City but it is very difficult to contain David Silva.
"I think he is as good as anyone in the Premier League at the moment."
90:00+3:48 The referee signals the end of the game.
90:00+2:37 Unfair challenge on Jermaine Beckford by Vincent Kompany results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Mikel Arteta.
90:00+0:52 Free kick taken by Joe Hart.
90:00+0:52 Booking The referee books Seamus Coleman for unsporting behaviour.
90:00+0:45 Seamus Coleman gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Joleon Lescott.
89:16 Corner taken right-footed by James Milner from the right by-line to the near post, Johnny Heitinga fouled by Joao Alves Jo,
the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Tim Howard.
88:55 Substitution Joao Alves Jo comes on in place of Nigel De Jong.
88:09 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Seamus Coleman by Aleksandar Kolarov. Mikel Arteta restarts play with the free
87:13 The ball is swung over by Leighton Baines, Vincent Kompany manages to make a clearance.
85:52 Substitution Victor Anichebe leaves the field to be replaced by Seamus Coleman.
85:10 Corner from the left by-line taken by Adam Johnson, clearance made by Sylvain Distin.
84:53 Nigel De Jong takes a shot. Blocked by Phil Jagielka.
84:38 Adam Johnson takes a outswinging corner from the left by-line played to the near post, Sylvain Distin makes a clearance.
Correction - 84:13 James Milner takes a shot. Blocked by Leighton Baines.
84:13 James Milner takes a shot. Blocked by Leon Osman.
Correction - 80:37 Substitution (Man City) makes a substitution, with Mario Balotelli coming on for Pablo Zabaleta.
80:37 Substitution Mario Balotelli comes on in place of James Milner.
77:23 Substitution Adam Johnson is brought on as a substitute for Patrick Vieira.
76:35 Jermaine Beckford takes a shot. Save made by Joe Hart.
76:10 Mikel Arteta sends in a cross, Edin Dzeko manages to make a clearance.
75:44 Mikel Arteta decides to take the corner short.
75:27 Centre by Phil Neville, Aleksandar Kolarov gets a block in.
72:51 Foul by Tim Cahill on Pablo Zabaleta, free kick awarded. Vincent Kompany takes the free kick.
71:14 Assist by Phil Neville.
71:14 GOAL - Leon Osman:Everton 2 - 1 Man City Leon Osman scores a headed goal from deep inside the penalty box. Everton 2-1 Man City.
70:32 Phil Jagielka takes the free kick.
70:32 Booking Aleksandar Kolarov booked for dissent.
70:25 Nigel De Jong is adjudged to have handled the ball.
69:35 The offside flag is raised against Jermaine Beckford. Joe Hart takes the free kick.
69:03 Tim Cahill takes a shot. Blocked by Joleon Lescott.
67:30 The ball is crossed by Leighton Baines.
66:51 Unfair challenge on Victor Anichebe by Joleon Lescott results in a free kick. Mikel Arteta crosses the ball from the free
kick right-footed from right wing.
66:30 Booking Caution for Leon Osman.
66:30 Unfair challenge on Pablo Zabaleta by Leon Osman results in a free kick. Pablo Zabaleta takes the direct free kick.
64:56 Mikel Arteta provided the assist for the goal.
64:56 GOAL - Sylvain Distin:Everton 1 - 1 Man City Sylvain Distin finds the back of the net with a headed goal from deep inside the penalty box. Everton 1-1 Man City.
64:43 Free kick awarded for a foul by Patrick Vieira on Tim Cahill. Mikel Arteta crosses the ball,
63:07 Tim Howard takes the direct free kick.
63:07 Substitution Tim Cahill replaces Jack Rodwell.
63:07 Leon Osman challenges Pablo Zabaleta unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is delivered right-footed by James
Milner from own half, Phil Jagielka fouled by Edin Dzeko, the ref awards a free kick.
61:25 Edin Dzeko produces a left-footed shot from just outside the box that misses to the right of the goal.
61:05 James Milner is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Johnny Heitinga.
60:44 Booking Jack Rodwell goes into the book for unsporting behaviour.
60:30 Joe Hart takes the indirect free kick.
60:30 Booking Vincent Kompany booked.
59:32 Foul by Jack Rodwell on Nigel De Jong, free kick awarded.
58:51 Aleksandar Kolarov has an effort at goal from outside the penalty box missing to the wide right of the target.
56:46 The assistant referee flags for offside against James Milner. Indirect free kick taken by Phil Jagielka.
56:26 Phil Neville concedes a free kick for a foul on David Silva. Aleksandar Kolarov takes the direct free kick.
55:52 Nigel De Jong concedes a free kick for a foul on Phil Neville. Free kick taken by Tim Howard.
54:58 Handball decision goes against Leighton Baines. Direct free kick taken by Leon Osman, David Silva delivers the ball, Tim Howard
makes a save.
53:20 The ball is crossed by Leighton Baines, clearance by Aleksandar Kolarov.
50:38 Unfair challenge on Aleksandar Kolarov by Mikel Arteta results in a free kick. Aleksandar Kolarov sends in a cross, Edin Dzeko
takes a shot. Save by Tim Howard. Aleksandar Kolarov takes a outswinging corner from the left by-line played to the near post,
Phil Jagielka makes a clearance.
50:24 Gnegneri Toure Yaya takes a shot. Tim Howard gets a block in.
47:32 James Milner challenges Leon Osman unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Mikel Arteta. Leighton Baines
takes a shot. Joleon Lescott gets a block in. Corner taken by Mikel Arteta from the left by-line to the near post. Inswinging
corner taken left-footed by Leighton Baines from the right by-line, Aleksandar Kolarov makes a clearance. Leighton Baines
takes the inswinging corner, clearance made by Pablo Zabaleta. Leighton Baines takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line
played to the near post, Edin Dzeko makes a clearance.
45:55 The ball is sent over by Jack Rodwell, Nigel De Jong gets a block in.
45:01 The referee gets the second half underway.
45:01 Substitution Jermaine Beckford is brought on as a substitute for Tony Hibbert.
45:00+1:28 The referee calls an end to the first half.
44:35 Aleksandar Kolarov takes the free kick.
44:35 Booking Phil Neville is shown a yellow card.
44:15 Phil Neville gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Aleksandar Kolarov.
42:11 Phil Neville crosses the ball, Headed effort from inside the box by Jack Rodwell misses to the right of the target.
40:59 Victor Anichebe fouled by Joleon Lescott, the ref awards a free kick. Mikel Arteta takes the direct free kick.
40:15 Shot by Gnegneri Toure Yaya from deep inside the penalty area misses to the right of the goal.
40:01 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by David Silva from the left by-line, clearance made by Phil Jagielka.
38:44 Unfair challenge on Mikel Arteta by Nigel De Jong results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Mikel Arteta.
38:23 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Victor Anichebe by Edin Dzeko. Sylvain Distin takes the direct free kick.
38:02 Leighton Baines takes a shot. Aleksandar Kolarov gets a block in.
37:44 Mikel Arteta takes a short corner.
37:13 A cross is delivered by Tony Hibbert, clearance by Vincent Kompany.
35:08 Aleksandar Kolarov sends in a cross, Phil Jagielka manages to make a clearance.
34:18 James Milner takes a shot. Sylvain Distin gets a block in.
32:39 James Milner gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Leighton Baines. Sylvain Distin restarts play with the free
30:18 Edin Dzeko takes a shot. Save made by Tim Howard.
30:02 Corner taken by Aleksandar Kolarov from the left by-line played to the near post.
27:57 Assist by David Silva.
27:57 GOAL - Gnegneri Toure Yaya:Everton 0 - 1 Man City Gnegneri Toure Yaya scores a goal from inside the area to the top left corner of the goal. Everton 0-1 Man City.
26:40 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Joleon Lescott by Victor Anichebe. Nigel De Jong takes the direct free kick.
25:24 Leon Osman is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Patrick Vieira takes the direct free kick.
24:37 James Milner gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Leighton Baines. Direct free kick taken by Tim Howard.
24:04 Leon Osman gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Edin Dzeko. Free kick taken by Joe Hart.
23:24 Leighton Baines takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, Joleon Lescott makes a clearance. Short
corner taken by Leighton Baines.
Correction - 21:57 Unfair challenge on Victor Anichebe by Vincent Kompany results in a free kick. Mikel Arteta fires a strike on goal direct
from the free kick, Gnegneri Toure Yaya gets a block in.
21:57 Foul by Vincent Kompany on Victor Anichebe, free kick awarded. Leighton Baines shoots direct from the free kick, Gnegneri
Toure Yaya gets a block in.
20:55 A cross is delivered by Mikel Arteta, Patrick Vieira manages to make a clearance.
20:35 Mikel Arteta takes a short corner.
19:41 Unfair challenge on Nigel De Jong by Phil Neville results in a free kick. Nigel De Jong takes the direct free kick.
18:02 Corner taken left-footed by Leighton Baines from the right by-line, clearance made by Patrick Vieira.
17:06 Corner taken right-footed by Leon Osman, Nigel De Jong makes a clearance.
16:45 Tony Hibbert produces a cross.
13:46 Centre by Gnegneri Toure Yaya.
12:53 Shot from outside the box by Leon Osman misses to the left of the target.
11:00 Shot by Patrick Vieira from inside the six-yard box clear the bar.
10:50 Pablo Zabaleta sends in a cross.
9:39 Mikel Arteta concedes a free kick for a foul on Nigel De Jong. Direct free kick taken by Pablo Zabaleta.
8:34 Effort from the edge of the area by David Silva goes wide of the right-hand upright.
3:02 The ball is sent over by David Silva.
2:36 Foul by Mikel Arteta on Pablo Zabaleta, free kick awarded. Vincent Kompany takes the free kick.
0:24 Free kick awarded for a foul by Pablo Zabaleta on Mikel Arteta. Leighton Baines restarts play with the free kick. Effort on
goal by Leon Osman from just inside the penalty box goes harmlessly over the target.
0:00 The match begins.
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