English Premiership

City reel in leaders Chelsea

2014-12-20 16:50
David Silva (AP Photo)

Manchester - David Silva filled in for Manchester City's absent strikers as the champions beat Crystal Palace 3-0 on Saturday to move level on points with Premier League leaders Chelsea.

City were missing Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic due to injury, but they secured an eighth consecutive victory in all competitions thanks to Silva's second-half brace and a late Yaya Toure strike.

Victory left City level on 39 points with Chelsea, who remain top by virtue of a superior goal difference (+23 to +22) ahead of their trip to Stoke City on Monday.

"It was a very good win. A very good performance. I enjoyed the way the team worked the whole week -- to work in a different way without strikers," said City manager Manuel Pellegrini.

"I did think December is a key month to be in the fight for the title, and if you want to be involved you must be very near the top of the table. I hope we continue playing like this."

Faced with an injury glut in the attacking department, Pellegrini deployed England midfielder James Milner as an auxiliary striker at the Etihad Stadium.

City goalkeeper Joe Hart signed a new five-year contract on Friday and he was quickly called into action, producing a sharp point-blank save to repel Mile Jedinak's header.

Yannick Bolasie then set up Fraizer Campbell to lash a close-range overhead kick narrowly wide of Hart's goal, but gradually City began to pick their way through Palace's defences.

Toure shot over twice, Samir Nasri teed up Silva to prod wide, and Pablo Zabaleta scooped a shot just off target from Toure's piercing through-ball.

The breakthrough arrived four minutes into the second half. From Fernandinho's pass, Zabaleta scuttled into the area before cutting the ball back for Silva, who beat Julian Speroni with the aid of a deflection off Scott Dann.

Silva claimed his second goal in the 61st minute, neatly steering home at the near post from Aleksandar Kolarov's left-wing centre.

James McArthur thought he had replied for Palace moments later when he headed Bolasie's cross past a statuesque Hart, but although Fernandinho appeared to have played him onside, the assistant referee's flag went up.

Palace manager Neil Warnock called it "a disgraceful decision".

Toure made the game safe for City in the 81st minute, collecting a square pass from Milner and slamming home left-footed at the near post.


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

22 October 2016
Bournemouth v Tottenham Hotspur, Vitality Stadium 13:30
Arsenal v Middlesbrough, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Leicester City v Crystal Palace, King Power Stadium 16:00
Swansea City v Watford, Liberty Stadium 16:00
West Ham United v Sunderland, Olympic Stadium 16:00
Hull City v Stoke City, The KC Stadium 16:00
Burnley v Everton, Turf Moor 16:00
Liverpool v West Bromwich Albion, Anfield 18:30
23 October 2016
Manchester City v Southampton, Etihad Stadium 14:30
Chelsea v Manchester United, Stamford Bridge 17:00
29 October 2016
Sunderland v Arsenal, Stadium of Light 13:30
Manchester United v Burnley, Old Trafford 16:00
Middlesbrough v Bournemouth, Riverside Stadium 16:00
West Bromwich Albion v Manchester City, The Hawthorns 16:00
Watford v Hull City, Vicarage Road 16:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Leicester City, White Hart Lane 16:00
Crystal Palace v Liverpool, Selhurst Park 18:30
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Will Jose Mourinho lead Manchester United to the English Premiership title in 2016/17?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.