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Man City dismantle Chelsea, return to top of league

Man City dismantle Chelsea, return to top of league
February 10
19:36 2019
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Manchester City scored four first-half goals in the first 25 minutes and Aguero helped himself to a hattrick as Pep Guardiola’s men returned to the top of the EPL with a 6-0 obliteration of Chelsea at the Etihad stadium in Manchester.

City, who have overcome a seven-point gap to take the top spot in midweek were deposed on Saturday by Liverpool, but the Qatar-backed club regained the top spot on goals difference albeit having played a game more.

The home side steamed out from the first whistle and opened their account in the third minute. Kevin de Bruyne’s quickly taken free kick found Bernardo Silva in space and his deflected low cross was slammed into the roof of the net by the onrushing Raheem Sterling.

Sergio Aguero scored a hattrick last weekend against Arsenal but he started this game by failing to convert a near-certain goal from two yards at the back post.

The Argentine striker, however, picked himself up and scored a hattrick, including two quick goals to punish a Chelsea defence which was still asleep.

The first was a brilliant 25-yard pile-driver while the second was a simple finish from and erroneous Ross Barkley back pass.

Ikay Gundogan added a fourth from the edge of the area with a low curling shot which keeper, Kepa Arizabalaga could only push into the net.

A shell-shocked Chelsea only regained some composure after the fourth goal, and with City slowing down the pace of the game. Hazard, through on goal, had his shot saved by Ederson, who held another Pedro effort minutes later.

The Brazilian also brilliantly diverted a Higuain long range drive as Guardiola’s men went into the break with a four-goal lead despite having only one shot on target more than their visitors.

The second period started like the first with an Aguero header crashing the cross bar. The 30-year old eventually slotted the third via a penalty kick won by Sterling on 55 minutes for a record-equalling 11th EPL hattrick.

Guardiola had time for a show of squad depth bringing on playmaker David Silva, and the Spanish midfielder was involved in the last goal of the game.

He released Oleksandr Zinchenko with a through ball on the overlap, and the Ukrainian youngster’s low cross was swept in by an unmarked Sterling from three yards to complete the rout.

The loss is Chelsea’s biggest since 1991, and it overshadowed a 0-4 loss at Bournemouth in their previous away game.

This latest defeat also condemned the Blues, who have not scored away from home since December, to a third loss in four games and they drop to sixth on the EPL log, one point behind resurgent Manchester United, who won 3-0 at Fulham, in fourth-place.

EPL RESULTS

Fulham 0-3 Manchester United

Crystal Palace 1-1 West Ham

Huddersfield 1-2 Arsenal

Southampton 1-2 Cardiff

Watford 1-0 Everton

Brighton 1-3 Burnley

Liverpool 3-0 Bournemouth

Tottenham 3-1 Leicester

Manchester City 6-0 Chelsea

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