Man City powered to a 4-0 win after initially struggling to shrug off a tricky Leeds side at Elland Road to leapfrog Liverpool and return to the top of the Premier League.
City found it hard to match Leeds’ trademark intensity for much of the first hour and gave up the ball unusually freely, but a pair of set-piece goals in either half gave them control over their play had lacked before Jesus and Fernandinho sealed victory late on to leapfrog two points above Liverpool in the title race.
They capped a frantic start when Rodri was left unmarked to glance home Phil Foden’s inviting free-kick, but completed barely three quarters of their passes in the Leeds half before half-time – their second worst figure of the season.
The hosts regularly looked threatening even though clear-cut chances came at a premium, and the nature of the City’s celebrations when Nathan Ake hooked past Illan Meslier from a corner nine minutes into the second period was a sign of their relief at adding a two-goal cushion.
A raucous Elland Road threatened to galvanize the hosts should they find a way back into the game but when it never came, Jesus put the result beyond doubt when he buried Foden’s perfect pass with 12 minutes left, and Fernandinho put the icing on the cake with a long-range potshot which crept past Meslier in added time.
A disappointing afternoon for Jesse Marsch’s side, who remain five points above the relegation zone after Burnley dropped them to 17th earlier on Saturday, was compounded by Stuart Dallas’ nasty-looking injury just before half-time, after captain Liam Cooper had already been ruled out of contention ahead of the kick-off when he limped out of the warm-up.
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Monday 9th May 3:15 am
Manchester City’s focus is now turning to the Champions League as they travel to Real Madrid for their semi-final second-leg, leading 4-3 from the opening game. Pep Guardiola’s will continue their Premier League title bid when they host Newcastle next Sunday, live on Sky Sports with kick-off at 4.30pm.
Leeds’ next challenge in their top-flight survival bid inside them go to top four-chasing Arsenal next Sunday, live on Sky Sports with kick-off at 2pm. They end the season with home matches against Chelsea and Brighton, before going to Brentford on the final day of the season.