City beat Spurs to hit summit

Manchester City moved to the top of the Premier League table on Wednesday as they saw off 10-man Tottenham Hotspur 5-1 at White Hart Lane.

Last Updated: 30/01/14 at 00:07 Post Comment

Sergio Aguero: Eventful first half saw him hit the woodwork, score and limp off

Sergio Aguero: Eventful first half saw him hit the woodwork, score and limp off

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Sergio Aguero, Yaya Toure, Edin Dzeko, Stevan Jovetic and Vincent Kompany did the damage for Manuel Pellegrini's free-scoring side but Spurs, who offered a solitary reply through Etienne Capoue, were left feeling aggrieved by a number of contentious decisions - including a straight red card flashed in the direction of Danny Rose.

Aguero could have had four by the 25th-minute mark as, sandwiched either side of his opener, the Argentine cracked one effort off the woodwork, saw a powerful header produce a sprawling one-handed save from Hugo Lloris and another hacked off the line by Rose.

When he was able to find the back of the net, he did so in style - latching onto a perfectly-weighted pass from David Silva to nonchalantly dink the ball over Lloris and send it spinning inside the post.

Spurs thought they had found a leveller nine minutes before half-time, but the flag was raised as Michael Dawson turned home a fizzed free-kick from Christian Eriksen.

Worryingly for City, Aguero hobbled off before the interval and could be set for another spell on the sidelines, but they wrapped up the points within eight minutes of the re-start.

Rose appeared to get a toe to the ball as he slid into a challenge on Dzeko, but he was given his marching orders by referee Andre Marriner, following consultation with his assistant, and Toure sent Lloris the wrong way from the penalty spot.

Then, three minutes later, Dzeko got in on the act himself as he finished emphatically after Silva had cracked the upright and the ball broke kindly in his direction, ensuring that an effort turned in by Capoue after a scramble from a Spurs corner counted for little in the grand scheme of things.

The final nails in Tottenham's coffin - who will be sick of the sight of City after shipping six at the Etihad Stadium in November - were hammered home by Jovetic, who saw a deflected strike hand him his first Premier League goal, and Kompany, who found himself in the right place at the right time to cushion the ball into an empty net.

Delicious

City started brightly and it was no surprise when Pellegrini's men drew first blood as Aguero, who had already hit a post, raced onto a Silva through-ball and produced a delicious finish.

Joe Hart prevented Kompany turning into his own goal from a corner, before Tottenham were forced back again with only a superb stop from Lloris preventing Aguero directing home a header.

The hosts finally started to grow into the game and, after Pablo Zabaleta was adjudged to have fouled Rose, Eriksen's fierce set-piece was bundled in at the back post by Dawson - only for the assistant to rule the goal out for offside.

Aguero was replaced by Jovetic late in the first half and Capoue came on for Mousa Dembele when the teams re-emerged after the break, when Spurs' hopes of a comeback were soon extinguished.

Just minutes after play resumed, Rose's clumsy challenge on Dzeko resulted in Marriner awarding a spot-kick, dishing out a red card and allowing Toure to convert from 12 yards.

The home fans were furious and saw their side fall further behind in the 53rd minute. Silva saw a strike come back off the post and Chiriches' poor clearance fell kindly for Dzeko to net.

"We want six" chanted the away support but Spurs were next to score as substitute Capoue turned past Joe Hart from a corner.

It raised the volume at the Lane, but only for a few minutes as City quickly regrouped.

After Toure limped off, Dzeko scooped wide before City extended their lead in the 78th minute when Jovetic saw his strike ripple the net via a slight deflection off Chiriches.

Jovetic failed to turn home before Aleksandar Kolarov's strike was deflected wide as City pushed for a fifth, which came when Kompany prodded home from close range.

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