Sergio Aguero hat-trick leads Manchester City to victory over Newcastle United
Manchester City have beaten Newcastle United 3-1 to restore their 12-point lead at the top of the Premier League.
Jacob Murphy pulled a goal back for Newcastle in the second half but Sergio Aguero completed his hat-trick in the 82nd minute to secure the victory.
Newcastle could have opened the scoring in the second minute after Jonjo Shelvey’s quick free-kick was played to Christian Atsu. His cross caused problems but Oleksandr Zinchenko cleared with his head.
Kevin de Bruyne, David Silva and Raheem Sterling combined with some slick passing five minutes later but Silva’s cutback was sent wide by John Stones.
Sterling had the ball in the back of the net in the 19th minute when he converted Silva’s cross, but the flag was up for offside.
Aguero did break the deadlock in the 34th minute, though. The Argentine striker turned in De Bruyne’s cross to net his 24th goal of the season.
Karl Darlow did brilliantly to keep out De Bruyne’s shot from the edge of the area to keep Newcastle just one goal behind at halftime.
Aguero scored City’s second goal from the penalty spot in the 63rd minute, thumping the ball into the net after Javier Manquillo was penalised for a tug on the shirt of Sterling.
Murphy pulled a goal back four minutes later. Zinchenko was out of position and Murphy exploited the space behind the defence to slot the ball past Ederson.
The two-goal lead was nearly restored with 20 minutes remaining. Leroy Sane cut the ball back for Sterling but Darlow was able to tip the shot onto the post.
De Bruyne should have added City’s third with eight minutes remaining but his first-time shot went wide.
Aguero completed his hat-trick a minute later, though. Sane dodged a number of tackles before sending the ball to Aguero in the box to finish.
The win sees Manchester City move 12 points clear of Manchester United while Newcastle remain just two points clear of the dropzone.