Sunday 27 April 2014
Manchester City's Barclays Premier League title destiny is back in their own hands following a 2-0 win at Crystal Palace on Sunday.
Manuel Pellegrini's men sit third in the table, three points behind leaders Liverpool, but triumphs in their three remaining fixtures would almost certainly be enough to secure glory after the Anfield side lost to Chelsea earlier in the day.
The 2011/12 Barclays Premier League champions, who hold a match in hand over Liverpool - against Aston Villa on 7 May - and a significantly superior goal difference, wasted no time in making the Merseysiders pay for their earlier slip-up as Edin Dzeko headed them in front at Selhurst Park with the game less than four minutes old.
The remainder of the first half passed by largely without incident, until Yaya Toure, who was making his return from injury, curled home a wonderful effort just before the interval.
Defeat brings an end to Palace's five-match winning run, while City's title tilt is back on track with matches against Everton (away), Villa and West Ham United (both home) to come.
Earlier in the day Chelsea had thrown the Barclays Premier League title race wide open after Demba Ba’s first-half strike and an added-time goal by Willian sealed a 2-0 victory for Jose Mourinho’s charges at Liverpool.
Steven Gerrard slipped while attempting to control a pass from Mamadou Sakho in first-half stoppage time, allowing Ba to burst clear on goal and guide the ball beyond the Simon Mignolet from 18 yards.
The hosts, whose attacking prowess had been integral to an 11-match winning run prior to this contest, were unable to find a reply and Willian added a late second for Chelsea after he and fellow substitute Fernando Torres had been left two-on-one with Mignolet.
The result left Liverpool just two points clear of the west Londoners at the top of the table, and provided a huge boost to third-placed Man City's hopes of catching Brendan Rodgers' side.
At the other end of the table Sunderland beat 10-man Cardiff City 4-0 to move out of the Barclays Premier League relegation zone and leave their opponents rooted to the foot of the division. The resurgent Connor Wickham, fresh from scoring goals at Manchester City and Chelsea, set them on their way when he headed in at a corner. Fellow striker Fabio Borini, scorer of the winning penalty in a 2-1 triumph over Chelsea, was on target from the spot again on the stroke of half-time after Juan Cala had tugged back Wickham and was shown a red card.
Emanuele Giaccherini added a third, and another Wickham header capped a miserable outing for Cardiff, who are two points behind Poyet's men with two matches remaining and facing the prospect of an immediate return to the Championship. Sunderland, on the other hand, have momentum on their side with three matches to play after moving up to 17th, leaving Norwich City in the drop zone.
You can follow how all the Barclays Premier League action unfolded in our Carlsberg Live Match Centre at live.premierleague.com. The Carlsberg Live Match Centre brings you match facts and stats, manager press conference videos, action images, as well as the latest Fantasy Premier League points for your team.
To read the full match reports click on the links on the right-hand side of the page.
Sunderland 4-0 Cardiff City | #SUNCAR | More on Carlsberg Live Match Centre >>
Liverpool 0-2 Chelsea | #LIVCHE | More on the Carlsberg Live Match Centre >>
Crystal Palace 0-2 Man City | #CRYMCI | Carlsberg Live Match Centre >>