Man City strolled to a convincing 5-0 win over Crystal Palace at the Etihad on Saturday to stay on course to qualify for the Champions League.
Pep Guardiola’s men are in a real scrap for a top four finish this season, and the win this weekend would have put all the pressure on their rivals to respond.
Goals from David Silva, Vincent Kompany, Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Nicolas Otamendi secured the victory, as Palace left Manchester empty-handed and still looking over their shoulder in the relegation battle.
While it looked as though ‘Big Sam’ had gotten them out of trouble, there will be a few anxious looks ahead of the rest of the weekend’s fixtures as a win for the likes of Swansea City and Hull City could put them in a real trouble.
Nevertheless, the positives for City included a healthy scoreline, a clean sheet and all-round impressive display to get the job done and with that win, they temporarily move above Liverpool into third place and open up a four-point gap over fifth-placed Manchester United.
Silva was the stand-out performer for many as he pulled the strings in midfield and got himself a goal, while it’s hard not to be impressed with the entire City attacking force and particularly the centre-half pairing who both looked solid at the back and grabbed a goal apiece to cap off a successful day for the hosts.
Manchester City player ratings: Caballero 7; Fernandinho 7, Otamendi 8, Kompany 8, Clichy 7; Toure 8, Sterling 6, De Bruyne 8, Silva 9, Sane 8; Jesus 7.
Substitutes: Zabaleta 7, Iheanacho N/A.
Crystal Palace player ratings: Hennessey 6; Ward 5, Kelly 4, Schlupp 5, Aanholt 6; McArthur 5; Milivojevic 6, Puncheon 4; Townsend 6, Benteke 5, Zaha 6.
Substitutes: Lee 5, Flamini 5, Delaney 5.