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City narrow gap on Chelsea


City narrow gap on Chelsea

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LONDON (AP) – Manchester City took full advantage of leader Chelsea dropping points by registering the biggest win of their Premier League title defence, while Manchester United dropped to fourth after losing at Swansea.

After ten-man Chelsea were contentiously held 1-1 by Burnley, City trimmed the gap on the leaders to five points by sweeping aside Newcastle 5-0.

Sergio Aguero put City in front inside two minutes with a penalty before Samir Nasri and Edin Dzeko scored in the next 20 minutes. David Silva completed the rout with quick-fire goals at the start of the second half as City cut Chelsea’s goal advantage to three in the title race with 12 games to go.

Chelsea had led through Branislav Ivanovic’s first-half opener, but Ben Mee headed in Burnley’s lever after key midfielder Nemanja Matic was sent off.

United lost for only the second time since November – and could be out of the Champions League qualification places by the end of the weekend – as Swansea came from behind to win 2-1.

Arsenal jumped ahead of United into third place with a 2-1 win at Crystal Palace thanks to goals by Santi Cazorla, from the penalty spot, and Olivier Giroud. Fifth-place Southampton host Liverpool on Sunday.

Tim Sherwood made a disappointing start to his managerial career at Aston Villa, with the team losing 2-1 at home to Stoke to stay in the relegation zone and drop below Burnley on goal difference.

Queens Park Rangers are only out of the bottom three because of goal difference after losing 2-1 at Hull, where they had midfielder Joey Barton sent off in the 32nd minute for hitting out at two opponents. Hull scored an 89th-minute winner through Dame N’Doye.

In the other game, Sunderland were held 0-0 by West Bromwich Albion.