City thump Chelsea, go top again

Aguero nets three as de­fend­ing champs maul Blues 6-0; Spurs keep pres­sure with win over Le­ices­ter

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - - WORLD - Agen­cies

MANCH­ESTER: Manch­ester City’s on-fire striker Ser­gio Aguero struck his sec­ond hat-trick in a week as the cham­pi­ons ruth­lessly de­stroyed woe­ful Chelsea in a 6-0 win at The Eti­had on Sun­day to re­turn to the top of the Premier League.

City and Liver­pool are both on 65 points with City hav­ing the bet­ter goal dif­fer­ence although they have played one more game than their ri­vals. Aguero, who scored a hat-trick seven days ago against Ar­se­nal, has now equalled Alan Shearer’s record of 11 Premier League hat-tricks.

Ra­heem Ster­ling fired City ahead in the fourth minute with a side-foot fin­ish af­ter a quick free­kick from Kevin De Bruyne had caught the Chelsea de­fence nap­ping. Af­ter Aguero missed an open goal from two me­tres, the Ar­gen­tine promptly beat goal­keeper Kepa Ar­riz­a­bal­aga with a blis­ter­ing strike from 25 me­tres.

A poor header to­wards his own goal from Chelsea’s Ross Barkley gifted Aguero with City’s third goal and then a low drive from Ilkay Gun­do­gan made it 4-0 af­ter 25 min­utes.

Fol­low­ing the break, Aguero, who also be­came City’s top scorer in league games, headed against the bar be­fore he com­pleted his hat-trick from the penalty spot af­ter Ster­ling had been brought down by Ce­sar Azpilicueta.

Ster­ling com­pleted the rout, turn­ing in a low cross from Olek­sandr Zinchenko in the 80th. The de­feat was Chelsea’s worst since their 7-0 loss to Not­ting­ham For­est in 1991.

SPURS SCORE THREE PAST LE­ICES­TER

LONDON: Tot­ten­ham kept alive their bid to gate-crash the Premier League ti­tle race as Davin­son Sanchez’s first goal for the club and Hugo Lloris’s penalty save in­spired a 3-1 win over Le­ices­ter on Sun­day.

Mauri­cio Po­chet­tino’s side took the lead through Sanchez’s first half header, but they were in­debted to Lloris for keep­ing out Jamie Vardy’s spot-kick af­ter the in­ter­val at Wem­b­ley.

Chris­tian Erik­sen net­ted mo­ments later and although Vardy got one back, Son He­ung­min’s late strike en­sured third- placed Tot­ten­ham clinched a fifth win in their last six league games.

The north Lon­don­ers are five points off the top of the ta­ble as they try to catch pace-set­ters Liver­pool and Manch­ester City.

While Spurs are still out­siders to win their first English ti­tle since 1961, their abil­ity to stay in con­tention de­spite in­juries to key play­ers Harry Kane and Dele Alli sug­gests they can’t be writ­ten off.

Le­ices­ter have lost four of their last five league games, in­creas­ing pres­sure on un­der-fire boss Claude Puel who has re­port­edly lost the sup­port of sev­eral in­flu­en­tial play­ers, in­clud­ing Eng­land striker Vardy, who was left on the Tot­ten­ham 3 Sanchez 33 Erik­sen 63 Son 90+1 Le­ices­ter 1

Vardy 76

bench for the first 60 min­utes be­fore com­ing on to miss the penalty with his first touch.

REUTERS

Ser­gio Aguero (left) scored twice in the first half be­fore con­vert­ing a penalty in the sec­ond as Manch­ester City beat Chelsea 6-0 on Sun­day.

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