Manchester City dominant in victory over Chelsea at the Etihad
Manchester City fired a warning shot to Premier League rivals in the title race, after a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Chelsea at the Etihad.
If Jose Mourinho needed a prompt to enter the transfer market before the window shuts, this was it. One point from two matches is simply not good enough and the visitors certainly looked blue at the final whistle.
They could have been one down after 30 seconds. Fit again Sergio Aguero got in behind the defence to latch onto a through ball and Chelsea needed a last-ditch save from second choice goalkeeper Asmir Begovic to stay level.
Aguero, though continued to be a menace to the Blues rearguard and it took two world class, almost identical saves from Begovic to keep him out until the Argentine found another way to score, playing a one-two with Yaya Toure, before jinking into the area and placing it beyond the grasp of the Bosnian goalie.
Chelsea rallied, though City defended in numbers, nullifying every threat excellently. Always dangerous on the counter-attack, the presence of Raheem Sterling in the team gives them an extra dimension in providing perfect transition between defence and attack, allowing City to break at pace.
Although Chelsea had renewed impetus for the second half, it was without their skipper John Terry, substituted for the faster Kurt Zouma, however, this was the City show. With lifelong celebrity fan, Noel Gallagher in the crowd, his team ensured that he wouldn’t be looking back in anger at the final whistle.
Midway through the second period, captain Vincent Kompany got the better of Branislav Ivanovic at a corner to nod home his second in successive games; almost a carbon copy of his one in City’s 3-0 win over West Bromwich Albion, to put the hosts well and truly in the driving seat.
In the last 10 minutes, Fernandinho took one look at Toure and said “whatever you can do, I can do better”, after the Ivorian’s sensational strike against the Baggies and buried a stinging, long-range shot into the bottom corner.
This was champagne football from Manuel Pellegrini’s side, who, impressively kept the same tempo for 90 minutes, though Chelsea are in trouble.