Second-half objectives from Riyad Mahrez, Phil Foden and Bernardo Silva earned Manchester Metropolis a 3-0 victory over Brighton & Hove Albion on Wednesday that helped the champions regain high spot within the Premier League.
After Liverpool climbed to the summit with a 4-0 mauling of Manchester United on Tuesday, Metropolis struggled to concern a response within the first half on the Etihad Stadium towards a well-organised Brighton.
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Nevertheless, Liverpool’s hopes of staying on high of the standings had been dashed as Metropolis got here out for the second half wanting extra like champions, breaking the impasse by way of Algerian ahead Mahrez within the 53rd minute.
That opener settled Metropolis’s nerves with the hosts scoring a second 12 minutes later as Foden’s effort from distance was helped previous Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez by a deflection.
With Brighton crushed, Silva added a late third to seal the win that moved Pep Guardiola’s aspect onto 77 factors from 32 video games. They’re one level forward of Liverpool as they search a fourth title in 5 years.
“We needed to win 14 video games in a row to win the title earlier than,” Guardiola stated. “If we drop factors they (Liverpool) might be champions, if we win all our video games we might be champions.
“We are actually mathematically positive of qualification for the Champions League (subsequent season). Now we all know what we’ve to do.”
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Guardiola’s aspect had been the overwhelming favourites to win Wednesday’s match on condition that Brighton had misplaced eight of their earlier 9 league video games towards Metropolis, conceding 27 objectives within the course of.
However the guests travelled to Manchester having crushed top-four chasing duo Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur of their final two matches – each away from house.
Simply had that they had carried out in these hard-earned victories, Brighton set about irritating Metropolis early on, limiting the hosts to efforts from a distance.
Mahrez wasted Metropolis’s finest first-half probability to attain as he delayed his shot too lengthy after Brighton keeper Robert Sanchez had left his aim vacant, earlier than captain Kevin De Bruyne drilled simply extensive.
No matter Guardiola stated on the interval labored, as quickly sufficient a rampaging run from De Bruyne pegged Brighton again, with Mahrez readily available to fireside house the unfastened ball.
It was Mahrez’s twenty third aim in all competitions this season -only Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah has scored extra (30) amongst Premier League gamers.
Foden then marked his fiftieth Premier League begin for Metropolis with a lucky second, earlier than Silva received in on the act eight minutes from time, arrowing a advantageous end into the underside nook.
“It’s important to be good right here to get something out of the match and we weren’t fairly there ultimately,” Brighton coach Graham Potter stated.
“Although they received a little bit of fortune with their objectives, we’ve no complaints with the general outcome.”