Manchester City edge closer to Premier League title


Champions-elect Manchester City continued their title procession with a 1-0 victory over Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium.

Bernardo Silva opened the scoring for the second game running, bundling the winner home 34 seconds into the second half as City moved 18 points clear at the top of the Premier League.

Antonio Conte’s decision to not start a recognised striker backfired as Chelsea, missing midfield lynchpin N’Golo Kante, failed to register a single effort on target en-route to a fourth defeat in five.

The champions will have no doubt travelled to the home of their successors hoping to replicate last week’s dominant first-half display at Old Trafford, but, as has been the case this season, City showed why they are 16 points clear of United with a dominant display of their own.

Chelsea were unable to break up City’s precise passing game in the opening exchanges and errors soon followed as Cesc Fabregas was caught in possession in his own area by Leroy Sane. The ball ran for Sergio Aguero but a block from Antonio Rudiger denied the Argentine his 200th City goal.

City’s dominance continued after the break and it took less than a minute for the pressure to tell as Bernardo Silva ghosted in behind Marcos Alonso to turn David Silva’s cross beyond Thibaut Courtois.

The 25th victory of City’s stellar season leaves Pep Guardiola needing just four more victories to dethrone Chelsea and claim a maiden title in English football.