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Match Recap – Merciless Manchester City Return To Top In Style

Blues Crush Chelsea In Stunning Display

Manchester City v Chelsea FC - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Sergio Aguero scored another hat-trick as Manchester City slaughtered Chelsea to return to the Premier League summit. Playing their third game in a week, the blues put on a stunning display to crush the 2017 champions and retake pole position in the race for the Premier League title, albeit having played a game more than Liverpool.

With the Merseysiders beating Bournemouth 3-0 yesterday, nothing other than a win would have done for the blues in order to keep pace and the pressure on Liverpool. And didn’t they do it with some style. The blues were 4-0 up by half-time thanks to Raheem sterling, a brace by Aguero and another stunner from Ilkay Gundogan. The blues finished the job in the second half, with Aguero completing his hat-trick and Raheem Sterling wrapping up the victory.

City scored in the first minute last Sunday at home to Arsenal, and it took them just three minutes longer to break the Chelsea defence. Kevin de Bruyne took a quick free kick found Bernardo Silva in acres of space on the right. His cross into the box evaded everyone except Raheem Sterling, who hammered home to give the blues the lead.

Aguero was then the recipient of City’s annual miss of the season, when the usually lethal striker hit the side netting when it seemed easier to score, however the striker would make up for that miss in style in the 13th minute. Taking the ball from Kevin de Bruyne and surrounded by three Chelsea players, the Argentine striker unleashed a powerful shot that flew into the top corner the put the blues firmly in control.

And Aguero effectively made sure of the points with just 19 minutes on the clock. De Bruyne chipped the ball into the box for Aguero, which was headed away by the Chelsea defence but only as far as Ross Barkley. The former Everton man then for some reason tried to head it back to his own keeper from the edge of the penalty area, only for the ball to fall to Aguero who hit a first time shot into the bottom corner for 3-0.

But the blues weren’t quite finished with Chelsea yet and on 25 minutes, it was 4-0. Aguero was again involved as he tried to make wriggle through the Chelsea defence. The ball was deflected off the Chelsea defender and fell nicely for Ilkay Gundogan to hammer home from the edge of the area. It was a score that blues fans could only dream of at half time against a top six side, and little did they know there was more to come.

Within the first few minutes of the second half, Aguero was denied a hat-trick as he thumped a header against the bar, but he would soon have a chance to equal Alan Shearer’s all-time Premier League hat-trick tally when Raheem Sterling was brought down in the box. Aguero scored the spo-kick but the real talking point was referee Mike Dean’s rather dramatic awarding of the penalty in the first place. Aguero now needs one more hat-trick to break Shearer’s record.

And with just ten minutes left, Sterling turned in Aleksandr Zinchenko’s cross to hand Chelsea their worst ever Premier League defeat. It also gained some measure of revenge for the 6-0 drubbing Chelsea inflicted on the blues in 2008 when Sven Goran Eriksson was at the City helm. For the blues, it was the fourth time this season they had hit six goals in one match, to go with the 6-1 hammerings of Huddersfield and Southampton, plus the 6-0 beating of Shakhtar in the Champions League.

The only sour note on an otherwise great day for the blues was Maurizio Sarri refusing to shake hands with anyone after the match, leaving Gianfranco Zola to apologise to City boss Pep Guardiola on his behalf.

City now turn their attention cup competitions, and will be hoping for a better result in the FA Cup fifth round as they travel to Newport, before travelling to Germany for the first leg of their Champions League tie with Shalke. City then meet Chelsea at Wembley two weeks today to contest the League Cup Final, with the blues hoping to retain the trophy they won last season.