Manchester City returned to the top of the Premier League table after a comfortable win over Burnley at Turf Moor with goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan. Burnley remain in the bottom three and could be seven points from safety if Everton beat West Ham tomorrow afternoon.
The hosts started the best of both sides but quickly found themselves behind when De Bruyne unleashed a powerful shot high and into the center of the goal after Raheem Sterling fired the ball back to the Belgian with just five minutes remaining.
City nearly made it two when Rodri saw his curled effort saved by Nick Pope before Gundogan’s volley went over the bar after De Bruyne tipped him out from a corner.
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Gundogan, however, scored his goal.
In what was a similar combination for the visitors, second after a quick give and go down the right side between Sterling and De Bruyne, the former found the German who passed Pope with just 25 minutes on the clock.
Manchester City’s Ilkay Guendogan scores his team’s second goal during the Premier League match between Burnley and Manchester City at Turf Moor on April 02, 2022 in Burnley, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Image credit: Getty Images
The hosts had a real lack of intensity in the first 30 minutes and could have been 3-0 down before the break when Phil Foden sent a fine ball past Sterling, who could not guide his effort on target, much to the relief of those Burnley fans behind the goal.
An attacking change from the hosts at half-time in which Dwight McNeil made way for Maxwel Cornet did little to change the fortunes of the locals.
A penalty appeal dismissed after Aymeric Laporte appeared to bring down James Tarkowski gave the hosts some hope they might be able to find a way back into the game, before Nathan Ake cleared Cornet’s header from the line, only for the linesman. signal the offside anyway.
As Burnley eagerly searched for a way back into the game, Manchester City looked dangerous on the counterattack.
The visitors probably should have killed the game when the ball fell nicely to replace Gabriel Jesus, whose effort hit the post after a slight deflection from Connor Roberts. The rebound fell nicely on the Brazilian but again he couldn’t direct his effort on target.
The match ended 2-0 – a result that sees City back to the top of the Premier League by a single point behind Liverpool, while Burnley remain in relegation. They face Everton at Turf Moor on Wednesday night in a massive game for both clubs’ survival hopes.
SUBJECT OF DISCUSSION
Manchester City respond to Liverpool’s title challenge in the most professional of displays, but perhaps they should have scored more. Today’s performance may not have been ‘vintage City’, but at this stage of the season all that really matters are the three points. The visitors did what they had to do today and in truth the game ended at the half hour mark.
City knew they had to win and they did. They dominated possession, as you would expect, and they created plenty of chances – 18 to be exact. However, one thing that would worry Pep Guardiola would be that they only scored two and only six were on target.
With Athletico Madrid looming, Guardiola will tell his player that those chances must be taken – certainly Jesus’ chances with 10 minutes remaining.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Raheem Sterling (Manchester City). Sterling wreaked havoc in the Burnley defense all afternoon and finished the afternoon with two assists.
He sometimes comes under scrutiny, but he remains one of City’s key players, especially in that forward area.
He probably should have had a goal as well, but it wasn’t the easiest of chances to convert to equity.
The England international will play a key role in breaking City in by the end of the season as they chase the treble.
Burnley: Pope 7, Roberts 5, Long 5, Tarkowski 5, Taylor 5, Lennon 6, Westwood 5, Cork 5, Brownhill 6, McNeil 4, Weghorst 5. Subs: Cornet 7, Rodriguez 5, Barnes 5.
Manchester City: Ederson 7, Walker 8, Laporte 7, Ake 7, Cancelo 8, De Bruyne 8, Rodri 8, Gundogan 8, Sterling 9, Foden 8, Grealish 7. Subs: Jesus 7, Silva 5.
5′ – GOAL! Burnley 0-1 Manchester City (De Bruyne): The Belgian smashes the ball high and into the center of the net after good work from Sterling to find his team-mate.
25′ GOAL! Burnley 0-2 Manchester City (Gundogan): A good back-and-forth down the right flank between Sterling and De Bruyne gives the former time and space to choose Gundogan, who puts him home for the first time after Pope.
- In their previous 15 meetings in all competitions, City are unbeaten, winning all 15.
- City have now scored 70 Premier League goals this season and conceded just 18.
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