City were at their magnificent best as they once again thrashed Tottenham to return to the summit of the Premier League.
The Blues ran out 5-1 winners as the hosts were overrun, outplayed and out-thought during 90 minutes of scintillating football that was as good as anything City have produced during this already fantastic season.
With Arsenal and Chelsea dropping points in this round of games, the Blues will aim to take full advantage of their closest rivals slipping up, but the loss of Sergio Aguero with what looked like a hamstring pull was the only sour note as City made it 11 goals against Spurs this season.
The North Londoners must be delighted to see the back of Manuel Pellegrini’s side this campaign!
City started the game at a rip-roaring pace that had Tottenham chasing shadows at times
...Spurs 1 City 5...
Aguero, in the form of his life, almost put the Blues on their way after just five minutes when he picked the ball outside the box before ghosting past three challenges to crash a shot onto the post with Hugo Lloris well beaten.
Kun didn’t have to wait too much longer for his 26th of the season, though, and the finish proved why he is considered to be one of the best strikers in world football.
David Silva, at his brilliant best, picked the ball up and shook off his marker before threading a pass through to Aguero who darted into the box before deftly flicking it past Lloris for the opening goal on 15 minutes.
It was a sublime finish from a player at the very top of his game.
The Argentinian then saw the Spurs keeper pull off a magnificent save when his header from Gael Clichy’s cross had looked set to double the visitors’ lead with City at their scintillating best.
With Spurs rattled and barely able to keep the ball out of their own half, they were fortunate not to concede a penalty when Dzeko’s shot was pretty much caught by Michael Dawson in the box but the unsighted Andre Marriner waved appeals away with his assistant on the line keeping his flag down.
Despite City’s dominance, there was a real scare after 36 minutes when Christian Eriksen’s whipped free-kick beat the diving Joe Hart and Dawson bundled the ball home virtually on the goal-line – but the flag was raised, presumably because Adebayor was in Hart’s path and had strayed marginally offside.
It was a let-off, but City’s superiority had been such that a home equaliser would have been harsh to say the least
...Spurs 1 City 5...
Then, moments before the break, there was the worrying sight of Aguero pulling up as he chased a long ball and he was forced to limp down the tunnel holding the back of his leg – it will probably be tomorrow at the earliest before we know exactly what the problem is.
The Blues raced out of the blocks after the break and within ten minutes, the points were sealed as City added two more goals and Spurs were reduced to ten men.
Dzeko raced into the box and was about to pull the trigger when Danny Rose appeared to take his legs as he closed in on goal – TV replays suggested he was a tad unfortunate as he seemed to have got the ball first, but nobody in sky blue was complaining.
Rose was dismissed and Yaya Toure tucked home his 15th of the season from the penalty spot. Two minutes later, it was 3-0 as Pablo Zabaleta found Silva and the Spaniard crashed a shot against the post before Dzeko volleyed the rebound high into the roof of the net.
At last the score-line reflected the night’s proceedings as City raced towards a 17th win in 19 games – an unbelievable run that has taken Manuel Pellegrini’s team to the top of the table and made them one of the most exciting teams to watch in world football.
Though Spurs pulled one back on 59 minutes through Etienne Capoue, there was never any real threat that it would be anything other than a consolation for the 10-men Lilywhites who at least knew the 6-0 drubbing they received at the Etihad earlier this season could not be repeated.
However, City were not about to let the beleaguered hosts off the hook and substitute Stevan Jovetic scored a fine individual goal on 79 minutes and when skipper Vincent Kompany scored from close range on 89 minutes, the score-line, at last, reflected the evening’s events and completed a 5-1 rout at The Lane.