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West Ham United
November 17, 2012
• Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Referee: J. Moss
• Attendance: 47072
David Silva 43'
S. Agüero 54', 67'
C. Tévez 65', 74'
And that's it for this afternoon, folks. Don't forget there's plenty more to see on Goal.com and remember to check out the match report and player ratings which will follow very shortly. Many thanks for joining me today!
And with that win, City go top, for the time being at least. Manchester United can reclaim top spot in the evening kick-off against Norwich, but Roberto Mancini will be pleased to see his side get back among the goals.
FULL-TIME at the Etihad Stadium and City have run out comfortable winners in the end with an emphatic 5-0 win. There's no doubt the first penalty changed the match and Paul Lambert may feel aggrieved, but the champions were well worth their lead and finished off the visitors with ease.
90' + 3'
The hosts can't quite fashion a chance and Barry is dispossessed. Villa break forward and Agbonlahor wins a free-kick on the halfway line before the visitors earn a corner which Kolarov clears comfortably.
90' + 1'
Three added minutes at the Etihad Stadium. City push forward but Kolarov wildly overhits his cross from the left-hand side.
City are just running down the clock now, spreading the ball across the back and waiting to celebrate today's emphatic victory.
Aleksandr Kolarov has space on the left and plays a dangerous low ball across the area, but Tevez can't quite get on the end of it and Villa have a goal kick.
Nearly six! Maicon is released by Tevez and the 31-year-old pulls back for Sinclair, who sticks out a leg to get on the end of it but can only lift it over the bar.
Villa enjoying a rare spell of possession, but City are content to sit back with their work done. Brett Holman collects it in the middle and hammers a long-range effort just over the bar.
Jordan Nathaniel Bowery
A quick change of shirt and Barry is back on the pitch. The pace has slowed right down in the match now and Villa just want the final whistle to come. Maicon presses forward down the right but loses control and it goes for a goal kick.
Gareth Barry is down after taking a smack in the face from Benteke's flailing arm. It looks unintentional but the former Villa midfielder doesn't care as he takes treatment to stop the bleeding.
Substitute Scott Sinclair has a great chance to pick up a goal as City break forward quickly. The winger darts into the box, cuts inside and releases a strike which flies over the bar. Disappointing effort.
City have now scored at least three goals in their last four league games against Aston Villa. Not a great stat for the Midlanders, that one.
Alex Fisher is enjoying this goal-fest now: "It is now far too easy for Manchester City as they score their fifth goal with a flowing passing move that finds Carlos Tevez unmarked at the back post to score. Edin Dzeko receives the ball on the edge of the penalty area, releases Samir Nasri outside him and his low cross is met by Tevez."
Assist Samir Nasri
Goal Carlos Tévez
TEVEZ GETS HIS SECOND!! City are running riot this afternoon. Nasri has the ball on the left-hand side of the area and drills a pinpoint cross along the six-yard box, and Tevez is there at the far post to tap in for his brace.
City are stroking the ball around with ease as Villa look completely dejected. It won't be a fun journey back down the M6 for the travelling fans.
More from Alex Fisher, frantically typing away this afternoon: "Things are going from bad to worse for Aston Villa but they have had a fair bit of bad luck as well. A quick counter attack from City sees Tevez release Aguero, he takes on Enda Stevens and unleashes a shot from inside the area but it deflects off full-back's foot and beats Guzan at his near post."
That was the last act from Aguero there, as supersub Edin Dzeko is introduced. The Bosnia striker will fancy his chances of adding to his recent glut of goals today.
Assist Carlos Tévez
Goal Sergio Agüero
AGUERO SCORES AGAIN!! It goes from bad to worse for Villa as Aguero bursts down the right and drives a low shot towards goal, which deflects off the defender and sneaks inside Guzan's near post.
Alex Fisher sees no problems with the second penalty: "City have extended their lead further with another penalty but this time there are no complaints from the Villa players. Barry Bannan clearly handles the ball sliding in to challenge David Silva and the assistant awards the spot kick, Carlos Tevez makes no mistake from 12 yards."
Penalty Goal Carlos Tévez
TEVEZ MAKES IT THREE!! City should have all the points today with that. Tevez emphatically slots it home, sending Guzan the wrong way. It's a miserable day for Villa now.
Another penalty to City!! Silva shows lovely control to collect a quick cross before hammering a shot towards goal, which is deflected behind. The Spaniard receives the ball again and turns inside a sliding Bannan, who is adjudged to have handled it on the floor.
Andreas Weimann is not happy as he comes off, and remonstrates with the fourth official. Clearly upset with the penalty decision.
Aguero picks the ball up and drives towards the by-line before finding Nasri at the far post, but the France international is closed down and Villa clear.
Villa have a long way back now and need to start pressing forward if they are to get anything from this match. The visitors are enjoying more possession but City are happy to sit back and let Villa play in front of them.
Here are Alex Fisher's thoughts on that spot kick: "Manchester City double their lead through Sergio Aguero but the decision to award a penalty is highly controversial and to be honest I'm still not sure why the assistant referee has given the spot kick. A corner from David Silva sails past two challenges before Ron Vlaar clears the ball over the bar, however the assistant appears to have deemed Andy Weimann to have handled the ball and awarded the spot kick. Aguero makes no mistake from the spot, he hits it low into the bottom corner past Brad Guzan."
Yellow Card Barry Bannan
Penalty Goal Sergio Agüero
AGUERO SCORES!! The diminutive striker slots it coolly into the corner. Guzan dives low to his left but can't get near Aguero's fine strike. City two up.
Penalty to City! There's some confusion but the assistant on the far side flags for a penalty after some shoving in the box, and City have a chance to double their lead.
Fantastic tackle from Ron Vlaar! Aguero is found in the box and is clean through with the goal at his mercy before Vlaar makes a vital challenge to clear for a corner.
Just wide from Tevez as the City forward receives the ball after fine work from Barry, and then drives a low effort just wide of Guzan's far post.
Maicon darts down the right again, but Bannan slides in with a superb challenge to dispossess the City defender.
It's a familiar pattern in the start of this second half as City set up camp in the final third once more. Vlaar makes a clearance from Silva's ball but the hosts press once more.
We're underway in the second half...
Here are Alex Fisher's thoughts at the break: "Half-time here at the Etihad and Manchester City are ahead and after dominating large parts of the game they deserve to be in front. They have found it hard to pass their way through the Villa defence and had to rely on a goalmouth scramble following a Samir Nasri corner to put them ahead."
HALF-TIME at the Etihad Stadium and the champions are in front. As it stands they will be top of the league by the end of the match. Villa were holding firm and had a couple of excellent chances of their own, but in the end the pressure told and Roberto Mancini's man will be relieved to go in ahead.
Villa try to push forward but Benteke's pass is poor and City have the ball again. Nasri finds Tevez, who lays back to Silva and the midfielder hits an effort from a tight angle which Guzan diverts behind.
Goal David Silva
GOAL!! It's not the tidiest of goals, by any means, but City finally have the lead. Tevez has a shot deflected wide and from the resulting corner the Argentina international has an effort blocked, and Silva is quickest to react, poking it underneath Guzan.
A mix-up between Nasri and Silva sees it roll out for a throw to Villa. Five minutes to go to half-time and the visitors will be the happier of the two sides so far.
Another rare foray forward from Villa sees Benteke and Ireland have efforts blocked. Villa are committing men forward only when they have to and could catch City out on the break here.
Former City man Stephen Ireland is cut down by Toure, and the Ivory Coast international earns a talking-to by the referee. Bannan's free-kick is wasted as the flag goes up for offside.
It's incredible how much possession the hosts have had, but they've yet to create a real clear-cut chance. Villa are sitting back but holding firm so far.
City win a corner from a Lowton clearance. Nasri swings it to the far post and Toure challenges for the ball, but Vlaar puts the lofty midfielder under pressure and his header goes well wide.
Silva and Maicon link up down the right-hand side, and the full-back pulls the ball back towards the near post, but there's no City player in a position to pick it up. Villa survive again.
Vlaar launches an absolutely superb ball forward into the path of Agbonlahor, but the forward slightly misjudges it and it runs out for a goal kick to the hosts.
Vlaar clears another City cross from the area. This is relentless pressure from the hosts but they aren't making any inroads. It's been frustrating for the champions so far.
Maicon darts down the right once more and fires another cross in. Clark clears it but into the path of Nasri, who tries a half-volleyed first-time effort which he scuffs into the arms of Brad Guzan.
Tevez has a chance to shoot but blasts his effort well off target. City soon recover possession and move it around, looking for an opening. Villa sitting very deep.
The City pressure continues and Maicon is involved again, playing it inside and the ball is worked to Toure, who has a long-range effort but it is blocked.
Lowton is fouled by Aguero on the edge of the Villa box and the visitors slow the play down.
Quick break in play as Clichy receives treatment after that effort. Nastasic then gets on the end of Nasri's corner but heads over the bar.
Yaya Toure makes an excellent driving run forward and spreads it to the left, where Clichy eventually drills a shot at goal, which Guzan fails to gather and it goes for a corner.
Great save from Hart! Enda Stevens whips a fantastic cross in and Benteke rises above Nastasic to divert a header towards goal. The City shot-stopper scrambles across to make a find save and tip the ball round the post.
Agbonlahor fouls Maicon on the near touchline and City once again press forward. Ron Vlaar manages to head away Silva's delicate chip looking for Aguero, but the hosts keep the ball.
Nearly an own goal! It's whipped into the City area from the right and Vincent Kompany stretches out a leg, diverting it straight towards goal, but Hart reacts quickly and snuffs out the danger. Lucky escape for City, there.
Alex Fisher has some thoughts on the opening quarter of an hour: "Maicon is causing all kinds of problems for Villa down the right wing and Enda Stevens is going to have nightmares about the Brazilian if it carries on like this. He has just been released on the right by Carlos Tevez, and sent across a sublime cross but no City player could get on the end of it."
Villa finally push forward for the first time and Christian Benteke plays it into the path of Agbonlahor, but the striker's touch is poor and the move breaks down after Benteke receives the ball and has a shot blocked.
Nasri spreads it out to the right into the path of Maicon, who takes a touch and drills a volleyed cross into the area which flies through everyone and out for a throw. Complete domination from the hosts so far, though.
Silva spreads it out to Nasri with a superb ball. The France international looks for Aguero in the box, but the striker is surrounded by defenders and Villa clear the danger.
Barry and Yaya Toure have acres of space in the middle at the moment. The visitors not pressing at all.
Lowton clears a Gael Clichy cross but City have it again. Villa really struggling to get out of their half.
The game's almost exclusively being played in Villa's final third at the moment. City have a corner which Tevez nearly diverts in from point-blank range, but it lands on the roof of the net.
David Silva can't quite find Samir Nasri with a cross-field ball and it flies out for a throw to the visitors. Agbonlahor is dispossessed by Maicon on the touchline and the hosts have the ball again.
City settling into possession quickly, spreading it around the midfield. Maicon presses forward down the right and tries an audacious shot from a wide angle, which slices into the crowd behind the goal.
Aston Villa get the game underway.
More from Alex Fisher now: "The players are lined-up in the tunnel here at the Etihad, Vincent Kompany has just embraced each member of his team while the band of mascots look on in excitement. The Villa players have joined them in their flourescent green kit and we are ready for kick-off."
Five minutes to kick-off at the Etihad Stadium. Will City be top by the time the full-time whistle goes?
STAT ATTACK: With 60 per cent, Manchester City have conceded a higher proportion of set piece goals of any team in the Premier League. Thanks to Opta for that little beauty.
Both sides were involved in combacks last weekend, with City coming from behind to beat Tottenham, while Villa let a 2-0 lead slip to succumb to a 3-2 defeat to Manchester United. City have struggled to break teams down at times this season; can they get the win today?
Alex Fisher is our man in the stands this afternoon, and he's checked in with us for the first time: "Good afternoon from the home of the Champions where Manchester City take on Aston Villa hoping to leapfrog their city rivals United at the top of the table. Victory here today will see Roberto Mancini’s side do just that however the last time Villa came here they went away with a victory in the Capital One Cup. Obviously both sides will be different to that night and the task ahead of the visitors is massive given they have conceded at least three goals on their last three visits here in the league, and haven’t taken all three points since 2007."
ASTON VILLA: Guzan; Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, Stevens; Westwood, Bannan, Ireland; Agbonlahor, Weimann; Benteke. Subs: Given, El Ahmadi, Albrighton, Holman, Bowery, Baker.
MAN CITY: Hart; Maicon, Kompany, Nastasic, Clichy; Yaya Toure, Barry; Silva, Nasri, Tevez; Aguero. Subs: Zabaleta, Dzeko, Lescott, Sinclair, Kolarov, Garcia, Pantilimon.
Let's not mess about, then. The teams are in...
Good afternoon and welcome to play-by-play coverage of today's clash between Manchester City and Aston Villa at the Etihad Stadium. I'm Tom McKeown and I'll be here to guide you through the match as the champions aim to maintain their unbeaten Premier League record.
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