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Six and the City: Balotelli cracker

sports Updated: Oct 23, 2011 23:15 IST

AFP
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Manchester-City-s-Mario-Balotelli-celebrates-after-scoring-against-Manchester-United-on-Sunday

Mario Balotelli scored twice as Manchester City defeated Manchester United 6-1 to go five points clear at the top of the Premier League on Sunday after their biggest win at Old Trafford for 85 years.

Balotelli - who was forced to flee his home on Saturday following a bizarre late night blaze triggered by fireworks in his bathroom - lit the fuse on City's title challenge after being named in the starting line-up by Roberto Mancini.

The 21-year-old Italian fired City ahead in the 22nd minute and added a second on the hour mark before Argentine striker Sergio Aguero netted a third.

A brace of late goals from Edin Dzeko and a David Silva finish completed City's scoring on a memorable afternoon as United suffered their worst home defeat in Premier League history.

United - who had Jonny Evans sent off two minutes into the second half - scored a memorable late goal through Darren Fletcher but it was only a scant consolation.

The defeat was United's first league loss at Old Trafford since April 2010 and left City at the top of the table. Balotelli celebrated his first goal by removing his jersey to expose a T-shirt with the slogan - "Why Always Me? - which delighted his team-mates but irked referee Mark Clattenburg who promptly booked the forward. The killer blow from him came on 60 minutes and again it owed everything to the ingenuity of Silva & Milner.

"It was our worst ever day," said United coach Alex Ferguson. "It's the worst result in my history. Even as a player I don't think I ever lost 6-1."

In another game QPR beat Chelsea 1-0.