Sport Soccer

Friday 14 December 2018

Manchester City celebrate Premier League title success with crushing victory

David Silva starred as the champions ran riot against Swansea.

Manchester City v Swansea City – Premier League – Etihad Stadium
Manchester City v Swansea City – Premier League – Etihad Stadium

By Press Association Sport Staff

Champions Manchester City turned on the style to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League table to 16 points with a 5-0 demolition of Swansea.

City needed just 16 minutes to take a stranglehold on the game as they struck twice in quick succession, with the mercurial David Silva heavily involved on both occasions.

It was Silva who ran on to Raheem Sterling’s pull-back to open the scoring with 12 minutes gone, and he who provided the perfectly weighted pass from which Fabian Delph squared for Sterling to score the second four minutes later.

Swansea made it to the break without further damage, but were hit again within nine minutes of the restart when Kevin De Bruyne unleashed a thunderbolt which gave keeper Lukasz Fabianski no chance, making it 3-0.

It was 4-0 within 10 minutes when, after Sterling had been felled by Federico Fernandez inside the area, Fabianski managed to turn Gabriel Jesus’ penalty on to a post only for Bernardo Silva to convert the rebound from a tight angle.

However, Jesus made amends with two minutes remaining when he finished from close range to complete something of a rout.

Alexandre Lacazette’s late double saw Arsenal ease to a 4-1 victory over West Ham in the first game since manager Arsene Wenger’s impending departure was announced.

After a frustrating first half during which the Gunners’ rearguard was repeatedly stretched by Marko Arnautovic, full-back Nacho Monreal fired the home side ahead with a 51st-minute strike, only for Arnautovic to level within 13 minutes.

However, Aaron Ramsey restored Arsenal’s lead with eight minutes remaining when his effort eluded keeper Joe Hart after defender Declan Rice had ducked underneath the ball, and it was then that the floodgates opened.

France international Lacazette secured the points three minutes later with an angled shot which clipped Aaron Cresswell on its way to goal before doubling his tally in emphatic style as time ran down.

Even the commendable efforts of England keeper Jack Butland could not help to secure the win Stoke so desperately needed to keep their survival hopes alive.

Badou Ndiaye’s first goal for the club gave the Potters an 11th-minute lead, but Butland had to deny Johann Berg Gudmundsson and James Tarkowski either side of a miss from Mame Biram Diouf which could have extended their advantage.

However, he was finally beaten with 62 minutes gone when, after he had brilliantly clawed away another Tarkowsi header, Ashley Barnes bundled home the rebound to snatch a 1-1 draw.

That left Paul Lambert’s men four points adrift of safety with just three games to play and the odds on them remaining a top-flight outfit are lengthening by the minute.

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