Manchester City demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt that the title race is far from over when they confronted Chelsea yesterday and had the temerity to annihilate them.
With Liverpool strolling past more bottom end cannon fodder with another offside goal, City had to play catch up against a supposed title-chasing side who had somehow beaten them earlier in the season.
There was to be no repeat yesterday. At Stamford Bridge, the sky blues were guilty of profligacy in front of goal and were astounded when the royal blues scored with their first shot ahead of half time. By the time the same stage was reached at the Etihad, it was 4-0 to City. In fact, it only took the blue-mooners 24 minutes to accumulate a massive, insurmountable lead.
It all began very quickly with some razor-sharp play by the inevitable Bernardo. Left alone by Alonso. Two channels opened for him and he chose Aguero. The cross was deflected into the second slot where Sterling steamed in and hammered home, a chance that he might well not have taken last season.
Seconds later City once again carved open a chance for Aguero who left the world speechless when his tap-in hit the side netting. But to make up for it..wow! Receiving the ball from Zinchenko more than 20 yards out, he opened the space with the outside of his foot and then arrowed one with the inside of his foot into the top corner.
He added to his tally moments later when Barkley’s headed pass to his goalkeeper was intercepted by Sergigol and toe-poked into the bottom corner. Gundogan, getting a new lease of life these days appeared on the edge of the box to slide home number four.
After that Chelsea seemed to have a kind of upper hand without getting anywhere.
In the second half City’s football was again breathtaking as Sterling destroyed Azpilicueta, inviting and accepting a foul in the box to enable Aguero to collect his second match ball in a week from the spot and earn himself a well-earned rest.
Enter Jesus, enter the man. First off, he was unlucky not to score when clearly pushed by Luiz when clean through, then he helped produce a chance for Sterling to tap in from centre stage.
This was not a win against Fulham, Bournemouth, Huddersfield et al..it was CHELSEA. Sergigol inevitably got man-of-the-match but it could have been Fernandinho, Bernardo or Sterling such was City’s supremacy. Even Ederson took the mickey out of Higuain at one point, Cruyff turning him on the goal line!
Aguero is now City’s greatest ever scorer and had equalled the number of hat-tricks scored by Alan Shearer in the Premier League.
Nine points in seven days, 11 scored, once conceded. What a return against 2 of the top 6 and an awkward in-between match unscrupulously dropped on their toes by the FA.
It’s now two weeks before we perform in the Premier League again as it’s FA Cup next weekend, Champions League the midweek after and then the Carabao Cup Final against….Chelsea the following Sunday. Who knows, by the time City take the field at Wembley, Stretford’s finest might have prized the Premier League doors wide open