Fernandinho

Swansea 0-4 Man City: Record-breaking Citizens

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  • Man City set new PL record with 15-straight wins
  • David Silva scores twice
  • Man City 11 points clear atop the table
  • City have now scored 52 goals in 17 games

We are witnessing history.

Manchester City beat Swansea City 4-0 at the Liberty Stadium on Wednesday as Pep Guardiola‘s men set a new top-flight record with 15 consecutive wins in the Premier League.

[ MORE: Guardiola reacts to record-breaking win ]

David Silva scored twice and Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero each grabbed a goal as Man City stretched their club-record unbeaten run to 25 games in the PL.

There is simply no stopping City who sit top of the Premier League table on 49 points and are set to break more records throughout the rest of the season. Swansea are bottom of the table and have just 12 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Aguero jinxed away from multiple Swansea defenders early on but his shot hit the side-netting and moments later Raheem Sterling‘s shot was blocked as the away side set the tone early on.

Fernandinho‘s low effort was then saved well by Lukasz Fabianski through plenty of bodies.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Jordan Ayew went close on the break for Swansea but the chances kept coming for City as de Bruyne and Aguero went close.

Nicolas Otamendi also went close and City soon were 1-0 up with Silva finishing to score for the third-straight Premier League game. The onslaught continued for most of the first half with de Bruyne then getting in on the act as his free kick missed everyone at the near post and went in. 2-0.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

City started the second half where they left off as Aguero cut inside and was denied by Fabianski, once again, with a fine save down low.

Silva grabbed his second and City’s third of the game with a fine finish as Sterling cut into the box, teed up the Spanish playmaker and he dinked home expertly to make it 3-0.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Roque Mesa‘s deflected shot almost caught out Ederson but he saved well and for the rest of the game Swansea sat back and it was a case of damage limitation against a simply majestic Man City.

Aguero finished things off as he made it 4-0 with a fine run and finish and got the goal his performance deserved.

Three things we learned from the Manchester Derby

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MANCHESTER — The Manchester Derby delivered drama in wintry conditions and it also underlined that this is Manchester City’s Premier League title to lose.

[ MORE: Mourinho calls City “lucky” ]

City beat United 2-1 at Old Trafford at a snowy Old Trafford on Sunday, with Pep Guardiola‘s men setting a new Premier League record for the most consecutive wins in a single season with 14 victories on the spin.

Guardiola leads Mourinho all-time with eight wins, seven draws and just four defeats from their 19 encounters, as United suffered their first defeat at home in 41 games in all competitions.

[ MORE: Pep delighted with derby win ]

This was also the first time they’d lost at home in the Premier League in 24 games, since they lost to Man City (who else!?) last September.

Here’s what we learned from an intense encounter in the Manchester Derby.


CONTRASTING STYLES CLEARER THAN EVER

“Park the bus, park the bus Man United! Playing football the Mourinho way!” sang the Manchester City fans from the away end at Old Trafford.

United did just that with two holding midfielders and long balls up to Romelu Lukaku, while City turned on the style and dominated possession and the tempo of the game.

United will point to Paul Pogba‘s absence through suspension as the main reason for their midfield failing to stake any claim whatsoever on the game, but the gulf in class between the teams during the run of play was incredibly vast. Just as we expected.

The 3-1 win at Arsenal last weekend somewhat papered over the cracks for United who lacked the dynamism in the final third they showed last Saturday, with Lukaku isolated up top without Pogba’s supporting runs.

As for City, their juggernaut continues. Guardiola’s men are the champions elect with a record 14 Premier League wins on the spin and they show no signs of slowing down. Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva may not have been at their fluid best, but they threatened to unlock a stubborn United defense on multiple occasions with Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Leroy Sane constant pests.

To add to their imperious form they’re taking the league by storm with style as “ole’s” rang out from the away end on multiple occasions. In the end, City eased by United in what is likely to be their toughest test of the season. That says it all.


CENTER BACK STILL AN ISSUE FOR CITY

John Stones‘ star is rising further as he sits on the sidelines.

The Man City and England center back pulled his hamstring in the victory at Leicester City last month and in his absence Nicolas Otamendi has stepped in admirably with Vincent Kompany also back full fit.

That said, Otamendi and Kompany had played against Huddersfield, Southampton and West Ham with City conceding in each of their last five games and Eliaquim Mangala also looking off the pace as he stepped in at times.

On Sunday a mistake from Otamendi — he was caught out of position on a long ball from Marcos Rojo and couldn’t head clear — led to Fabian Delph mis-controlling and Rashford making it 1-1 right on half time. Kompany came off at half time with Fernandinho slotting into central defense, and then Mangala came on after City went 2-1 up.

Otamendi made amends for his first half mistake with an acrobatic finish to put City 2-1 up, but it’s at the other end where City will see their biggest challenges in continuing their incredible winning run.

It’s hard to pick holes in a team which is 11 points clear atop the table but Guardiola must know he’s at least one center back away from having a truly great team. He has one in Stones, for sure, and may need to acquire another one in January if they’re going to sweep all before them not only in England but in Europe too.


LOW-POINT FOR LUKAKU

Romelu Lukaku had an absolute shocker in Manchester United’s biggest game of the season and Zlatan Ibrahimovic‘s shadow is looming larger than ever over the Belgian striker.

When United needed Lukaku most, especially with no Pogba, their big money summer signing faltered.

Lukaku was largely at fault for both of City’s goals as the ball hit him from a corner for the first and David Silva hooked home, then he made an absolute mess of a routine clearance from a free kick which led to Otamendi scoring the winner.

He looked short of confidence when he was set free in attack and although he had no support, the $100 million man was well off the pace and didn’t try to drop deep to get into the game. Lukaku has scored just twice in his last 13 appearances for United and just once in his last eight outings in the Premier League. It showed.

Twice in the second half he was set free but he hammered the ball over on the first break and then dribbled into a defender on his second break. On both occasions moan and groans were loud from the home fans at Old Trafford and to put the icing on the cake he was denied an equalizer late on from inside the six-yard box as Ederson saved superbly when Lukaku should’ve scored.

Zlatan, who came on to partner Lukaku late on against City, will now surely get a run in the team over the busy festive period. If the veteran striker delivers goals, how can Mourinho leave him out of the team? After a red-hot start to life at United, Lukaku has pretty much hit rock bottom.

Right now he’s not a threat in attack and he cost his team dear defensively in the derby.

WATCH LIVE: The 175th Manchester Derby

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Here goes nothing almost everything, as Paul Pogba-less Manchester United hosts Premier League leaders Manchester City at Old Trafford on Sunday (Watch live at 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE

It’s the business end of Double Derby Day on NBCSN, with the Red Devils hopeful of handing City its first loss of the Premier League season.

Sergio Aguero is on the bench for City in this 175th Manchester Derby, with Gabriel Jesus leading the line.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Juan Mata are United’s best chance makers on the bench, with Anthony Martial, Romelu Lukaku, Jesse Lingard, and Marcus Rashford poised to attack City.

LINEUPS

Manchester United: De Gea, Valencia, Smalling, Rojo, Young, Matic, Herrera, Rashford, Lingard, Martial, Lukaku. Subs: Romero, Lindelof, Jones, Shaw, McTominay, Mata, Ibrahimovic.

Manchester City: Ederson, Walker, Otamendi, Kompany (c), Delph, Fernandinho, De Bruyne, Silva, Sterling, Sane, Jesus. Subs: Bravo, Zinchenko, Gundogan, Bernardo, Mangala, Danilo, Aguero.

WATCH LIVE: Manchester City vs. West Ham

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Manchester City looks to keep its unbeaten season alive and push its Premier League lead to eight points as they host David Moyes and West Ham United at the Etihad live on NBCSN and live online at NBCSports.com.

With a win, Pep Guardiola can equal the record winning streak in Premier League history as City searches for its 13th straight victory. The team has dropped points in just a single game this season, a 1-1 draw with Everton in the second match of the campaign.

WATCH LIVE: Manchester City vs. West Ham live on NBCSports.com

Sergio Aguero starts up front for City, with Gabriel Jesus on the bench along with Vincent Kompany and Fernandinho. The Belgian defender is being rested after three straight starts, while Fernandinho is on a yellow card and will be saved for the Manchester United match. Leroy Sane has recovered from an illness to make the starting lineup.

For West Ham, Moyes has completely shuffled the deck. Adrian starts in goal for the first time this Premier League season in a forced change with Manchester City loanee Joe Hart ineligible to play against his parent club. Moyes has also decided to bench playmaker Marko Arnautovic in favor of 21-year-old Swiss winger Edimilson Fernandes, while Andy Carroll is injured and Andre Ayew is dropped, leaving Michail Antonio as the lone striker. Pablo Zabaleta captains the team for the first time, coming against his former club.

The Hammers will look to do better against City than last season, when they lost all three matches by a combined 12-1 score. Over their last 25 meetings, City has won 17 to just three for West Ham.

LINEUPS

Manchester City: Ederson, Walker, Mangala, Danilo, Otamendi, Delph, De Bruyne, D Silva, Sterling, Aguero, Sane.
Subs: Bravo, Kompany, Gundogan, B Silva, Fernandinho, Toure, Jesus.

West Ham: Adrian, Cresswell, Zabaleta, Obiang, Ogbonna, Kouyate, Rice, Antonio, Fernandes, Masuaku, Lanzini.
Subs: Trott, Johnson, Quina, Arnautovic, Ayew, Martinez, Sakho.

WATCH LIVE: Huddersfield Town vs. Manchester City

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The John Smith’s Stadium gets its first look at Manchester City when the Premier League leaders visit Huddersfield Town on Sunday (Watch live at 11 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE

City is unbeaten this season, including 10-straight league wins by a combined score of 37-6.

Town has won two of its last four, but the promoted side were blown out in the other pair of matches (3-0 at Liverpool and 4-0 at Bournemouth).

LINEUPS

Huddersfield Town: Lossl; Smith, Zanka, Schindler, Malone, Hogg, Williams, Mooy, Ince, Van La Parra, Depoitre. Subs: Green, Kachunga, Cranie, Lowe, Quaner, Mounie, Hadergjonaj.

Manchester City: Ederson, Walker, Otamendi, Kompany (c), Delph, Fernandinho, De Bruyne, Silva, Sterling, Sane, Aguero. Subs: Bravo, Danilo, Zinchenko, Jesus, Bernardo, Mangala, Gundogan