Chief football writer Richard Sutcliffe assesses the performances from the men in orange and black.
Jakupovic 6 - Vital save to deny Defoe early in the second half and had no chance with Sunderland’s first goal from close range.
Elmohamady 5 - Guilty of making far too many basic errors, while even his normally reliable crossing game was off radar.
Maguire 6 - Tried to get City going by stepping forward with the ball but not as dominant as usual in the air at the back.
Ranocchia 6 - Cool and composed in possession but, like Maguire, looked much more vulnerable than usual in defence.
Robertson 7 - A threat going forward and pulled off vital last gasp tackle on Borini as the Sunderland man looked to be through on goal just after the hour.
Markovic 6 - Denied by a stunning one handed save by Jordan Pickford but had to be substituted due to injury.
N’Diaye 5 - Almost handed Defoe the opener by taking the ball off Maguire and playing the England striker through. Squandered excellent chance after the break. Substituted.
Clucas 7 - At the heart of City’s better moments, even when briefly moved out wide on the left following Markovic’s injury.
Grosicki 7 - Linked up well with Robertson down the left flank and unfortunate that his pinpont cross was squandered by N’Diaye in the second half.
Hernandez 7 - Came close in the first half with rasping shot after neat footwork on the right had created the opening. Also denied by John O’Shea block in second half and then Pickford again late on.
Niasse 5 - Toe poked a late chance wide to equalise, just about summing up an afternoon in which he struggled.
Huddlestone (for Markovic 65) 6 - Great skill prevented Defoe getting clear late on.
Mbokani (for N’Diaye 78) - Poor control in stoppage time broke up a promising move.
Evandro (for Elmohamady 85) - Dragged a shot wide when well placed.