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Tuesday, January 31, 2023
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City maintain perfect start

By Tom McKeown

Manchester City maintained their perfect start as they won 2-0 at Everton to go top of the Premier League on Sunday.

Aleksandar Kolarov fired City in front on the hour mark after Romelu Lukaku had hit the bar for Everton, while David Silva struck against the post.

Joe Hart suggests that he would rather keep Manchester City's run going than celebrate a club record equalling ninth consecutive win

 

Both sides had chances in a very open encounter at Goodison Park, with Sergio Aguero twice denied by Tim Howard and Jesus Navas spurning a glorious opportunity to kill the game off, before Samir Nasri sealed the result late on.

Romelu Lukaku had a goal disallowed for offside
Romelu Lukaku had a goal disallowed for offside

Aguero tested the Everton goalkeeper again as both sides looked lively, and the striker met Navas’ low cross with a first-time effort which Howard again saved with his legs.

Raheem Sterling had a glorious chance to open the scoring, but he failed to meet Silva’s low cross with the goal at his mercy.

Manchester City manager Maunel Pellegrini praised his side's performance against Everton
 Manchester City manager Maunel Pellegrini praised his side’s performance against Everton

 

The hosts looked threatening going forward themselves, though, and they thought they had gone in front on 23 minutes when Barkley’s pass took a deflection and fell for Lukaku, who rounded Joe Hart and fired home, only to see the flag go up for offside.

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Seamus Coleman fired wide from 20 yards while Sterling saw a low effort saved from a similar position at the other end as both sides continued to press for an opener.

And Everton were so close to going into the break with a lead after Tom Cleverley was felled on the edge of the box by Fernandinho, before Lukaku’s free kick hit the bar and flicked over.

David Silva fired against the post early in the second half
David Silva fired against the post early in the second half

City came out of the blocks quicker in the second half, and almost broke the deadlock after good work by Sterling, who found Silva in the box, and the Spaniard drilled against Howard’s near post.

Just as Everton were growing back into the match, City struck a key blow on the hour as Sterling again picked the ball up on the left and drifted inside before finding Kolarov on the overlap, and the defender drilled a low shot from a tight angle which flew past Howard and into the far corner.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez claims that his side are close to playing at a good level
Everton manager Roberto Martinez claims that his side are close to playing at a good level

The visitors should have been out of sight just a few minutes later, when Navas profited from a clash between John Stones and Tyias Browning to run into the box unchallenged, but the winger hesitated and ended up firing a shot straight at Howard.

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Martinez’s men had a strong penalty appeal turned down as they looked for a way back into the game, but Yaya Toure’s clumsy challenge on Jagielka went unpunished.

Hart had a lucky escape as well when he flapped at an Everton corner, but it didn’t quite fall for an attacking player, while Vincent Kompany cleared Gareth Barry’s header off the line.

Samir Nasri made it 2-0 to the visitors late on
Samir Nasri made it 2-0 to the visitors late on

 

But the hosts couldn’t make their pressure tell and City sealed the result in the 88th minute, when substitute Nasri played the ball to Toure on the edge of the box, and the Ivorian returned it to him with a stunning chip over the top before Nasri lifted the ball beyond Howard to score City’s second.

It moves City back to the Premier League summit and maintains their 100 per cent record in an impressive start to the season.

Everton's Seamus Coleman conceded Man City were more clinical in front of goal, and hopes John Stones stays at Goodison
Everton’s Seamus Coleman conceded Man City were more clinical in front of goal, and hopes John Stones stays at Goodison

Player ratings

Everton: Howard (6), Galloway (4), Jagielka (6), Stones (5), Coleman (8), Barry (7), McCarthy (6), Cleverley (7), Barkley (7), Kone (5), Lukaku (6).

Subs: Naismith (6), Deulofeu (6), Browning (5).

Man City: Hart (6), Sagna (6), Kompany (7), Mangala (5), Kolarov (7), Toure (7), Fernandinho (6), Navas (7), Sterling (7), Silva (9), Aguero (6).

Subs: Delph (6), Nasri (7), Bony (6).

Source:Skysports

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