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Premier League: Manchester City leaves it late again to beat West Ham United

David Silva scored a late goal as Manchester City won their 13th successive Premier League game and restored their eight-point lead with a 2-1 victory against West Ham United on Sunday.

football Updated: Dec 03, 2017 23:56 IST
Associated Press
Associated Press
Associated Press, Manchester
Premier League,Manchester City,West Ham United
David Silva (L) reacts after scoring the winner for Manchester City against West Ham United on Sunday.(AFP)

David Silva calmly prodded home an 83rd-minute volley as Manchester City beat West Ham 2-1 on Sunday for a third last-gasp win in a week in the Premier League.

Raheem Sterling was City’s late match-winner in the 2-1 victories over Huddersfield and Southampton, but it was Silva this time who drifted into the area and met Kevin De Bruyne’s lofted pass with a finish on the stretch.

West Ham looked like becoming only the second team to take points off City this campaign when Angelo Ogbonna headed the opener in the 44th minute.

City lacked urgency in the first half but improved after the break and Nicolas Otamendi swept in Gabriel Jesus’ cross to equalize in the 57th.

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With its 13th straight win — matching the Premier League record for a single season — City re-established its eight-point lead over Manchester United ahead of next week’s top-of-the table derby.

The blueprint for playing City had been set in recent weeks by Huddersfield and Southampton, who both defended deeply in numbers and were only undone by late winning goals by Sterling.

West Ham manager David Moyes deployed the same tactics with his team getting nine outfield players behind the ball and leaving midfielder Michail Antonio as the lone forward.

The visitors took a long time over each goal kick and throw-in, which enraged the home crowd, and looked to exploit their set-piece opportunities. It was no surprise, then, that their goal came from that source.

Cresswell got the ball back from a corner and whipped in an inswinging cross that Ogbonna headed home for his first top-flight goal.

City’s first-half display was flat, the fans maybe expecting an easy ride against an out-of-form opponent, and it needed the halftime introduction of Jesus to liven them up.

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It was the Brazil striker who set up the equalizer, his cross from the right turned in by Otamendi, via a slight deflection off the sprawling Declan Rice.

As West Ham started to lose its defensive shape, City enjoyed more sightings on goal but Adrian — deputizing for Joe Hart, who was ineligible against his parent club — produced a string of brilliant saves, the best coming off Jesus’ curling shot.

He could not deny Silva, though, as City earned a 14th win in 15 league games.

First Published: Dec 03, 2017 23:55 IST