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Premier League

  • 14 April 2012
  • • 17:15
  • • Carrow Road, Norwich, Norfolk
  • Referee: C. Foy
  • • Attendance: 26812

Norwich City 1-6 Manchester City: Tevez hat-trick & Aguero double fires visitors to within two points of United in title race

Norwich City 1-6 Manchester City: Tevez hat-trick & Aguero double fires visitors to within two points of United in title race


Five goals from the Argentine duo and one from Adam Johnson were enough to see off Paul Lambert's men at Carrow Road

Manchester City saw off a battling Norwich City at Carrow Road in some style, running out 6-1 winners thanks to a hat-trick for Carlos Tevez and two for Sergio Aguero as they piled the pressure on Manchester United at the top of the table.

City manager Roberto Mancini, aware of the threat the Canaries possessed, picked a full strength side for the game, combining the Argentinian flair of a strike force made up of Aguero and  Tevez with the silky passing of David Silva which would have proved too much for most sides.

The three were given free reign by their manager and the visitors reaped the reward from the newly reunited Argentinian partnership, seeing the duo get a five-goal haul between them as well as a late sixth from Adam Johnson.

An incisive pass from Gareth Barry created the first clear-cut chance, finding Tevez in the box his first touch was poor but he managed to nudge the ball into the path of David Silva whose shot from eight yards was brilliantly saved by John Ruddy.

Many of City's fans were incensed by Manchester United’s penalty against QPR and they had another reason to be disappointed with officials after Tevez was booked for diving, although replays showed that Ryan Bennett made substantial contact inside the box.

Despite the visitors' early dominance Grant Holt was almost celebrating as he nodded a ball past Hart who was tangling with Aaron Wilbraham after a corner, it looked destined to be the first goal of the game but for a goal line clearance courtesy of the head of Joleon Lescott.

Minutes after Lescott’s vital header Tevez made another massive contribution to his side’s title challenge after his time away; he took advantage of a disorganised Norwich defence after Bennett’s pass was intercepted by Silva to open the scoring.

The Spaniard played in Tevez on the right-hand corner of the box at an improbable angle, the Argentine had no doubt in his ability firing a lightning bolt of a shot towards the top corner before seeing the ball swerve massively to deceive Ruddy and end up in the middle of the goal.

Tevez and Aguero then produced a piece of Argentine magic to further their lead. Aguero played in his compatriot on the edge of the box, before receiving it back thanks to a clever back heel and with his first touch Aguero made no mistake in rifling the ball into the top corner.

The effort rendered Ruddy helpless, with the English keeper at full stretch but still a sizeable distance away from the ball.

Holt again came close to getting on the scoresheet after doing well to get his foot to a cross which was awkwardly behind him, but he still managed to swing his foot around the delivery which drew Hart into a good reaction save.

Half-time substitute Andrew Surman gave his side a fighting chance just after the break. He took advantage after Hart failed to control his box in an aerial challenge with Wilbraham simply half-volleying the ball into the net.

Zabaleta wasted a golden chance to cancel out Surman’s goal after eluding Adam Drury at the back post. He only had the keeper to beat but he fired it into Ruddy who made himself big to get the block in.

Norwich's hopes of getting anything from the game was, however, short-lived as an inspired push for an equaliser ended in the visitors enhancing their lead over the Canaries.

That man Tevez nodded the ball over Ruddy after the Norwich keeper could not control a fiercely drilled shot from Yaya Toure, seeing the ball cannon up into the air to find the head of the Argentine.

The fourth of the visitors’ goals came courtesy of Aguero, taking advantage of an obviously disheartened Norwich side he took the ball to the left side of the box, before dropping his shoulder and curling a beautiful shot into the bottom corner; Ruddy had no chance.

The formally exiled Tevez proved critics wrong again in this match after using his pace to punish Ryan Bennett’s shocking back pass, which was never reaching Ruddy, rounding the keeper before simply slotting the ball into an empty net to get his hat-trick.

Johnson made it six after both he and Aguero had efforts come off of the woodwork. Aguero swung in a cross to Clichy at the back post, who played the ball first-time into Johnson unmarked in the box for an easy tap-in.