Tottenham Hotspur 1 Manchester City 5

FA Premier League
Wednesday 29 January 2014, 19.45 KO

City: Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany (c), Demichelis, Clichy, Toure (Nastasic 64), Fernandinho, Navas, Silva (Kolarov 80), Aguero (Jovetic 45), Dzeko
Unused: Pantilimon, Lescott, Rodwell, Negredo
Goals: Aguero (15), Toure (pen 51), Dzeko (54), Jovetic (78), Kompany (89)
Booked: Toure, Demichelis, Aguero, Zabaleta

Referee: Andre Marriner
Man of the Match: David Silva

Aguero hits the post.

Aguero hits the post.

City were out of the traps quickly, taking the game to their opponents. Just five minutes had been played when the Blues fashioned the first good chance to open the scoring, but Aguero’s shot bounced off the post and out to safety, as he fired across Lloris. Dzeko blazed over after a neat one-two with Aguero, as he shot from the corner of the box.

But with 15 minutes on the clock, the visitors opened the scoring. Aguero has been in terrific goalscoring form this season and there was no change at the Lane. Silva slipped a brilliant through-ball for the Argentine, who beat the offside trap to place it past Lloris.

It took a brilliant save from the Tottenham goalkeeper to keep the score at 1-0. Clichy crossed for Aguero to head and it looked like his effort was destined for the net, but Lloris clawed it out before it crossed the line. The Argentine quickly had another header cleared off the line, before his volley from the rebound was a foot over the bar. City could have had a penalty for a handball by Dawson, too.

Tottenham thought they had equalised with ten minutes of the half to play, but the offside flag was up against Adebayor in the build up. A free kick was crossed into the middle where the Togolese striker jumped to head it, but missed – leaving the centre-back to nod home. He was onside, but his striker was interfering with play in front of him.

On the stroke of half time, the Blues lost Aguero to another injury. The striker pulled up holding his hamstring and his game was over. Demichelis was booked for a seemingly fair challenge on Adebayor, before the centre-back headed harmlessly over at the near post.

Toure battles for possession.

Toure battles for possession.

Early in the second half, the visitors imposed themselves further on the game. Toure had the chance to add the Blues’ second of the night from the penalty spot when Rose was adjudged to have brought down Dzeko. It looked a harsh decision as the full back looked to have timed his tackle well to win the ball, but the linesman waved his flag and Rose was dismissed. Toure sent Lloris the wrong way.

Three minutes later, City added their third. Silva picked up the ball inside the box from a great pull-back by Zabaleta, and, after carrying it across the face of goal, his shot hit the post and bounced out. The deflected rebound fell to Dzeko, who knocked it past Lloris.

Just before the hour mark, the ten men pulled a goal back. A corner was badly defended by the Blues, as Zabaleta missed the ball completely and it fell kindly for Capoue on the edge of the six-yard box. He was never going to miss, blasting his shot past the stranded Hart.

Dzeko could have had two goals in the space of three minutes as two glorious chances to add City’s fourth were spurned by the Bosnian. First, Clichy picked him out with a great cross from deep and the striker’s first touch was perfect for him to hit, but his effort was well wide. Second, Zabaleta picked out the forward after a fine passing move, but Dzeko got his finish all wrong, chipping it wide weakly.

With just over ten minutes to play, the fourth goal came and it was an opening Premier League goal for Jovetic. Silva slid the ball to the Montenegrin on the left flank, where he cut inside and tried to bend a shot around Lloris. It took a nick on the way through, but it didn’t help the home side and it found the bottom corner.

In the closing stages, it was almost five for the Blues, as a brilliant ball slipped Navas in on the right. His low cross was just behind Jovetic and he couldn’t wrap his foot around it to shoot, but it fell to Kolarov. The Serbian belted it, but Lloris was able to block it behind.

Though, in the final minute, the captain added another. A corner fell nicely to Dzeko, who was able to tee himself up to volley at goal. It was blocked ahead of Lloris and fell kindly for Kompany, who was faced with an open goal. He simply stabbed it over the line, despite Lloris’s best efforts to recover.

With Arsenal dropping points the night before, City go to the top of the league.

Manchester City 6 Tottenham Hotspur 0

FA Premier League
Sunday 24 November 2013, 13.30 KO

City: Pantilimon, Zabaleta, Demichelis, Nastasic (Lescott 45), Clichy, Navas, Fernandinho, Yaya Toure (c), Nasri (Milner 77), Negredo, Aguero (Garcia 69)
Unused: Hart, Richards, Dzeko, Guidetti
Goals: Navas (1, 90+2), Sandro (og 34), Aguero (41, 50), Negredo (55)
Booked: Toure

Referee: Howard Webb
Man of the Match: Fernandinho

Navas chips Lloris in the opening seconds.

Navas chips Lloris in the opening seconds.

With a tricky fixture following the disappointing result on Wearside, City were looking for a quick start to ease the worries. That’s exactly what they got: Just 14 seconds in, Lloris spooned a clearance straight to Aguero. The Argentine shot and the keeper parried, but it dropped to Navas – he expertly lobbed it over the stranded goalie and in off the post.

Five minutes after dropping behind, the visitors almost responded. Lennon got in behind Clichy and drilled a low ball through the box. Pantilimon could only flick it towards the back post. It fell kindly to Lamela, who played it past the stranded goalkeeper, but couldn’t beat Demichelis on the line.

It was nearly two for City after seven minutes, as Aguero and Negredo combined on the edge of the box. The Spaniard’s flick sent the Argentine through on goal, but his attempted dink over Lloris was brilliantly saved at the last second. The move was like a hot knife through butter.

The City fans wanted a penalty for a sliding challenge by Sandro on Nasri shortly after, but the referee ruled the Brazilian had claimed the ball with the Frenchman through on goal. He had to get the tackle right and he just did. It was from behind, though, so perhaps the visitors were lucky.

The away side were growing into the game, however. Vertonghen hit a free kick straight at Pantilimon and the keeper swallowed it up, before Soldado’s shot bobbled wide when he really should have hit the target. It summed up Tottenham’s game: Plenty of possession, but little end product.

And they were punished for it. Fernandinho nodded another poor clearance from Lloris down to Nasri on the left flank. He found Aguero and the Argentine drew the goalkeeper, before squaring for Negredo. His shot took and double deflection and dropped into the net, going down as an own goal for Sandro.

Five minutes from half time, the Blues added their third. The hosts had raised their game following a series of challenges that went unpunished when the Blues thought there should have been free kicks, and the response was to bury another chance. Zabaleta delivered a perfect cross from the right for Aguero to sweep into the bottom corner.

Aguero tries a dink over Lloris.

Aguero tries a dink over Lloris.

The first action of the second half saw Aguero double his tally. Toure burst free from the Tottenham defence and, despite being pushed and pulled all over the place, he managed to stay on his feet to deliver a ball across for Aguero to smash past Lloris. The game was as good as over, with 40 minutes still to play.

It was getting embarrassing for the visitors, who were almost a fifth down three minutes later. Nasri broke free on the right and, with Negredo and Zabaleta in the box, chose to chip Lloris. His effort had the keeper flapping and he got nowhere near it, but must have been relieved when it bounced clear off the underside of the crossbar.

A brilliant turn on the edge of the area from Negredo was rewarded by another goal. Dawson couldn’t get near to the Spaniard as he worked the ball onto his left foot to set himself up to bend it around Lloris. With just 55 minutes played, City had scored five and Tottenham were like rabbits in the headlights.

Chances began to flow for the hosts, who were looking like they could add as many as they wanted. Zabaleta had a shot blocked over, while a low cross from Navas was almost squeezed in by Nasri. Negredo also nodded over from six yards with a free header, while Toure sidefooted over from the edge of the box.

Fernandinho should have scored his first City goal with ten minutes to play, as Navas drilled the ball into the box and found the Brazilian with time and space. However, the midfielder got his feet tangled up and it bounced behind via both of his shins.

With the game trundling towards full time, the fans had one more goal to send them on their way. Milner produced a brilliant ball over the top for Navas to chase with Dawson. The Spaniard out-paced his marked and raced through for a one-on-one with the goalkeeper. Lloris didn’t stand a chance, and the man who opened the scoring rounded it off.

City have now scored more goals at home this season than any team in the Premier League has scored in total.