Manchester - Manchester City were left two points in front of champions Manchester United at the top of the English Premier League after a 1-0 win at home to Arsenal on Sunday.
David Silva scored the only goal of a high-quality contest in the 53rd minute after Mario Balotelli cut in from the left and let fly with a powerful low shot that Arsenal keeper Wojciech Szczesny did well to save but could not hold.
Sergio Aguero followed up and, as the ball came loose on the right, Silva pounced to score from close range.
City missed several chances to double their lead and were almost made to pay when in-form Arsenal striker Robin van Persie received the ball just eight yards out only to shoot weakly at England goalkeeper Joe Hart.
Then Argentina defender Pablo Zabaleta nearly made it 2-0 to the hosts when his shot beat Szczesny only to bounce off the keeper's right post.
Hart then preserved City's lead in the 90th minute when he tipped over a shot from Thomas Vermaelen that came through a crowd of players. In stoppage time, another Vermaelen strike curled just wide.
Defeat meant Arsenal, beaten for the first time in nine games, stayed fifth in the table, 12 points behind City.