Everton 0-3 Manchester City: Erling Haaland on target again as Pep Guardiola’s side stroll to win at Toffees
Ilkay Gundogan struck a brace and Erling Haaland was again on target as Manchester City took a significant step towards retaining the Premier League title with a comfortable 3-0 win at struggling Everton.
Gundogan steered in a 37th-minute opener with an improvised finish off two sublime touches to mark his 300th appearance for the club in style.
The Germany star then turned provider just two minutes later when Haaland, who was named FWA Player of the season earlier in the week, nodded in his 36th top-flight goal of the season from Gundogan’s lovely cross.
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Everton had kept the visitors at bay with some excellent defensive structure early in the proceedings, but they began to wilt under the constant strain, and their threat on the counter attack also faded as the contest wore on.
City swaggered through much of the second-half with Gundogan making it four goals in his last two league appearances with a stunning free-kick on 51 minutes.
Everton remain 17th, just one point above the relegation zone, with two games left.
Pep Guardiola’s treble chasers will now switch focus to the second leg of their Champions League semi-final at home to Real Madrid on Wednesday night.
Everton are next in action when they visit Wolves on Saturday.
Pep’s title charge continues as City’s biggest game of the season looms. This was Man City’s 11th straight Premier League win which also saw them make it 18 games unbeaten in all competitions. It’s further evidence of an ability to peak when it matters most and with just six points required from their final three league matches, you sense a third top-flight title on the spin – and a ninth overall – is almost in the bag.
The Citizens will be favourites to lift the FA Cup against neighbours United in the first ever all-Manchester final too, which leaves the small matters of the holy grail – that maiden Champions League triumph to try and clinch the treble.
Holders Real Madrid remain the acid test in the competition, but if City can overcome that hurdle they will be quietly confident of seeing off one of the Milan sides in the final, which arguably makes the upcoming second leg with Los Blancos the most significant clash of the Citizens’ whole season – and they look in very good nick ahead of it.
As for Everton, few would have given them much hope of bolstering their survival bid in this fixture but their lack of goals remains a huge concern ahead of two ‘cup finals’ to try and retain their long-standing status as a top-flight club.
Player of the match
Ilkay Gundogan (Man City). The 32-year-old has once again hit a sizzling run of form in a title run-in and was integral to this victory as he unlocked Everton’s stubborn defence with a moment of magic before adding a stunning free kick and a lovely assist to cap a very tidy afternoon’s work.
MAN CITY: Ederson 7, Walker 7, Laporte 7, Dias 7, Akanji 7, Gundogan 9, Rodri 7, Mahrez 8, Foden 8, Alvarez 7, Haaland 8. Subs: Grealish 6, Bernardo Silva 6, Phillips n/a, Gomez n/a.
37’ – GOAL! – Everton 0-1 Man City. Gundogan improvises with a sublime touch off the thigh and a backward flick into the net from Mahrez’s teasing cross.
39’ – GOAL! – Everton 0-2 Man City. It’s two in two minutes as Haaland powers a header home from Gundogan’s lovely left-wing cross.
51’ – GOAL! – Everton 0-3 Man City. Gundogan curls a delightful 20-yard free kick over the wall and into the top corner.
66’ – EVERTON CHANCE! Ederson tips Onana’s powerful header from a right-wing corner on to the top of the bar.
Gundogan has been directly involved in three goals in a PL game for the second time, over six years after the first in a 4-0 win at West Brom in October 2016.
Haaland is the third player to score in five successive away PL appearances for Man City, after Sergio Aguero (on three occasions) and Uwe Rosler.
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