- Man City go top of the table
- Sterling scores twice; 17 PL goals this season
- 3 defeats in 5 for Palace
Manchester City beat Crystal Palace 3-1 at Selhurst Park on Sunday to keep their title bid on track.
Two classy goals from Raheem Sterling set them on their way to victory, with Gabriel Jesus grabbing a late goal after Luka Milivojevic had pulled one back for Palace. In the end, Pep Guardiola‘s men won with minimum fuss to put the pressure back on Liverpool, who they have a game in hand of in the Premier League title race.
With the win City momentarily moved back to the top of the table on 83 points, and the reigning PL champs know they will win the title if they win all of their remaining five games. Palace remain in 13th on 39 points.
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City started brightly and had a big chance to take the lead, with David Silva wriggling away from defenders inside the box and then setting up Sterling who somehow dragged his effort wide.
But Sterling was clinical with his next chance. Kevin De Bruyne played a wonderful ball through to Sterling and he took one touch before clipped a delightful shot into the far top corner to make it 1-0.
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Leroy Sane then dribbled at goal and forced Vicente Guaita into a smart stop at his near post and Aguero smashed a shot over the bar. Palace tried hard to contain City but didn’t have many chances of their own as Benteke, Zaha and Townsend struggled to impact the game.
City looked dangerous on the break throughout the game, and should have been 2-0 up as Ilkay Gundogan clipped a lovely ball over the top but three Man City players got in each others way and De Bruyne’s shot was saved by Guaita.
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Guaita then saved as De Bruyne’s cross flicked off Martin Kelly and towards his own goal, but Palace’s goalkeeper reacted well down low. Man City doubled their lead in style, as a flowing move saw Aguero, Silva and Sane combine to set up Sterling as he tapped home to make it 2-0.
But Palace set up a nervous finish for City, as Milivojevic curled home a free kick to make it 2-1 after Cheikhou Kouyate caused havoc in the defensive wall.
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Despite that scare, City wrapped up in the win in the 90th minute as De Bruyne launched a counter and set up substitute Gabriel Jesus (who looked to be just offside) to slot home the third.
Job done for Man City.