Five-star Man City go top of Premier League, Tottenham smashed by Newcastle

Published April 14, 2024
NEWCASTLE: Alexander Isak (C) of Newcastle United scores against Tottenham Hotspur during their Premier League match at St James’ Park on Saturday.—Reuters
NEWCASTLE: Alexander Isak (C) of Newcastle United scores against Tottenham Hotspur during their Premier League match at St James’ Park on Saturday.—Reuters

MANCHESTER: Manche­ster City moved to the top of the Premier League as lowly Luton were eased aside 5-1 at the Etihad, while Newcastle thras­hed Tottenham 4-0 on Saturday.

Amid a gruelling schedule, Pep Guardiola could hardly have wished for a kinder fixture in between the two legs of his side’s Champions League quarter-final against Real Madrid.

Guardiola made six changes from a thrilling 3-3 draw in the Spanish capital on Tuesday and City seemed set for a stress-free afternoon from the moment they opened the scoring after just two minutes.

Erling Haaland’s shot deflected in off the unfortunate Daiki Hashioka into his own net.

Yet the floodgates refused to open as the English champions had to wait until after the hour mark before making the points safe when Mateo Kovacic smashed in Julian Alvarez’s cross at the edge of the box.

Haaland scored five then the sides met in the FA Cup in February.

The Norwegian had to settle for just one time this time when scored from the penalty spot for his 20th Premier League goal of the season.

Ross Barkley netted a late consolation for Luton but they have just five games left to save their top-flight status.

Jeremy Doku fired into the far corner after jinking through the Luton defence before Josko Gvardiol scored his second goal in a week after opening his City account in Madrid.

Victory takes City two points clear of Arsenal and Liverpool, who both have a game in hand, and are in action on Sunday.

Liverpool host Crystal Palace at Anfield looking to bounce back from their shock Europa League defeat to Atalanta.

Arsenal entertain Aston Villa, who moved back into the top four without kicking a ball on Saturday thanks to Tottenham’s trouncing at St. James’ Park.

MANCHESTER: Mateo Kovacic of Manchester City shoots to score against Luton Town during their Premier League match at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.—AFP
MANCHESTER: Mateo Kovacic of Manchester City shoots to score against Luton Town during their Premier League match at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.—AFP

ISAK DOUBLE

Alexander Isak scored twice, while Anthony Gordon and Fabian Schar were also on target as the Magpies moved up to sixth and kept their slim chances of Champions League football next season alive.

Newcastle are 10 points adrift of Tottenham and Villa with six games remaining but have the far easier run-in.

“We’ve just got to keep doing our bit which is trying to win every game,” said Newcastle boss Eddie Howe.

“We’re hopefully returning to somewhere near our best and we’ve got to keep heading in that direction.”

At the bottom of the table, Nottingham Forest edged one point clear of the bottom three after a thrilling 2-2 draw against Wolves.

Matheus Cunha struck twice for the visitors at the City Ground to deny Forest a vital three points after goals from Morgan Gibbs White and Danilo had put them 2-1 in front.

Brentford’s first win in 10 games pulled the Bees seven points clear of the drop zone as Ollie Arblaster’s own goal and Frank Onyeka earned a 2-0 victory over Sheffield United.

Burnley’s chances of survival are fading fast after a 1-1 draw at home to Brighton left them still second bottom, six points adrift of safety.

Published in Dawn, April 14th, 2024

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