Man City respond to Liverpool’s early pressure in title race

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Saturday review

Man City respond to Liverpool’s early pressure in title race

Leeds United v Manchester City - Premier League

Champions sweep aside Leeds to usurp Liverpool at the top after they beat Newcastle as Norwich go down

Manchester City responded to losing their top spot earlier in the day to Liverpool once more with a 4-0 victory at Leeds United to return to the No 1 slot, as the top two edged past in-form opposition to continue their exciting battle for the Premier League title.

A much-changed Liverpool team had gone above Man City after ending Newcastle United‘s run of four straight victories with a hard-fought 1-0 win at St James’ Park thanks to Naby Keita‘s first-half goal.

That made it 40 points out of a possible 42 in the Premier League for Jurgen Klopp‘s team as they chase an unprecedented quadruple.

But, despite facing a Leeds side on a five-match unbeaten run, Pep Guardiola‘s team struck early at Elland Road through Rodri‘s header and second-half goals from Nathan AkeGabriel Jesus and Fernandinho sealed the victory that keeps City one point ahead of their title rivals.

City’s margin of victory also reduced Liverpool’s advantage in goal difference to just one as well.

Title race

Pos Team Pl GD Pts
1 MCI 34 +63 83
2 LIV 34 +64 82

Liverpool have the chance to lay down the gauntlet to City again next Saturday, when they host Tottenham Hotspur, a day before the leaders are at home to Newcastle.

Such an order of fixtures is favourable to Liverpool, according to former Leeds forward Jermaine Beckford.

“I would prefer to play first to get the points on the board, hopefully, and put the pressure on Man City,” Beckford said.

Beckford: I’d prefer to play first in title race
Ex-Leeds striker says schedule helps Liverpool to put pressure on Man City

Norwich go down

At the other end of the table, Norwich City were relegated after their 2-0 defeat at Aston Villa, combined with Burnley’s 2-1 win away to Watford, left them adrift on 21 points at the bottom.

It is a record sixth relegation from the Premier League for the Canaries.

Burnley‘s remarkable win at Vicarage Road continued the turnaround in their fortunes after the departure of manager Sean Dyche.

They came from behind to claim victory thanks to two second-half goals in fewer than four minutes.

It meant that Burnley have won 10 points from a possible 12 under Dyche’s replacement Mike Jackson.

Fight to avoid drop

Pos Team Pl GD Pts
16 BUR 34 -15 34
17 LEE 34 -34 34
18 EVE 32 -21 29
19 WAT 34 -37 22
20 NOR 34 -49 21

View Full Table

The goals from Jack Cork and Josh Brownhill extended Burnley’s lead in the table to five points over Everton, who are in the final relegation place.

Everton will hope to close the gap on Burnley and Leeds when they host Chelsea on Sunday, one of two matches they have in hand on both their relegation rivals.

Top-four focus

Eyes on Sunday will also turn towards the race to finish fourth as the two leading contenders, Arsenal and Spurs, are in action.

Spurs welcome Leicester, looking to return to winning ways after the draw at Brentford last weekend allowed Arsenal to regain fourth place.

They will also be hoping that their London rivals West Ham United will do them a favour at home to Arsenal.

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