Manchester City beat Brighton 3-0 to take the top spot


Manchester City topped the Premier League with a 3-0 win over Brighton on Wednesday, scoring three goals in the second half.

The scoreline did not tell the full story of the Norwegian contest at Etihad Stadium in which the champions were disappointed by Brighton before the break.

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Distracted strikes from Riyadh Mahrez and Phil Foden were taken to break them down and the feeling of relief that had spread around the ground after the restless opening period was tangible.

Bernardo Silva scored the third goal for the hosts eight minutes later to completely settle any nerves as City regained their one-point lead.

Liverpool put pressure on City in a thrilling title race with a 4-0 win over Manchester United on Tuesday.

City manager Pep Guardiola made six changes following Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final defeat to Liverpool, with Kevin de Bruyne and Ederson returning.

As a result, there was no lack of confidence from the home side but Brighton was not in the mood to make things easier.

City first showed their danger 10 minutes later, making a slick move and whipping Foden into the cross from the left but Mahrez failed to make proper contact with his header.

Mahrez was immediately given a second chance when goalkeeper Robert Sanchez’s clearance came directly to him but the Algerian player took too long and allowed Moises Cassido to return and tackle.

Sanchez was more confident when he punched De Bruyne’s cross and he also did well to eliminate Silva’s attempt under his own bar.

The nearest City came in the first half when De Bruyne fired a fierce shot from a distance but it narrowed wide.

City continued to push but Brightons were determined before the break by Captain Lewis Dunk, who was determined to stop Ilke Gundogan’s attempt.

Half-time City were forced to change as Nathan AK, who started from the left back, was replaced by Ruben Dias.

Dias, himself back in action after being injured in nine games, took his well-known position in the middle and John Stones went to the right back and Joao Cancello to the left.

City pushed the tempo forward and forced a corner kick after 53 minutes before finally succeeding.

De Bruyne separated from the deep and fed Mahrez, although the pass was made better by a lucky ricochet. As the opportunity opened, Mahrez ran for goal and hit a shot, which this time also took deflection off Joel Weltman’s ball and looped over goalkeeper Sanchez.

With that, the tension seemed to evaporate a lot.

Brighton were strong enough to stop the Stones’ effort in the crowded area and save Sanchez well from de Bruyne, but the visitors were broken again in the 65th minute.

Again City benefited from a stroke of luck as Foden aimed from a distance following a corner and saw his effort as Enoch Mewepu found the wrong foot towards Sanchez and the bottom corner.

Foden moved closer to the other as soon as he passed but Sેnchez stood tall to save his feet.

City ended the game late after Bright struggled to play later.

Substitute Alexander Zinchenko took possession and found De Bruyne, who in turn fed Silva to clean the house from the edge of the area.

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