Football.com - everything football

Manchester City keep the pressure on Liverpool with a strong 3-1 win over West Brom

by Nick D
Apr 21, 2014 4:54 PM EDT



Manchester City are back to winning ways with a strong performance against West Bromwich Albion. Pellgrini's men put 3 goals past Foster in the first half and this was enough to secure themselves the full three points as the title race closes in on the final stage of the season.
Manchester City couldn't have asked for a better start to the match, as they took the lead in only the 2nd minute of the game. Nasri played in a dangerous cross from the right wing into the box. It looked like a standard header clearance by Ridgewell, though the ball would drop right in front of Aguero who caught it first time on the volley. Foster made a good save but the ball would float back into play and Zabaleta was the fist to react and he would head home as the keeper scrambled to get back into position. 1-0 for the Sky Blues and the crowd and the players needed this start after recent results.
Zabaleta an unlikely hero as he opened the scoring in the 2nd minute
City though were not done yet as they doubled their lead only minutes later. West Brom were nervous and struggled to get out of their own half. The more City pressed froward the deeper they dropped into their own half. A dangerous tactic when you are playing against a star studded team such as Manchester CIty. Aguero was back in the starting line-up and after five games without a goal the Argentine was ready to break his drought. He held possession about 20 yards out and he tried to play a one two with his team mate. The ball though would take a deflection off Amalfitano but go straight back to the striker. Then without warning Aguero, with some space in front of him, rifled in a powerful strike towards the bottom right corner. Foster caught off guard and also by the pace, would dive but it was all too late as the ball found the back of the net. 2-0 and West Brom were in trouble of having this game get out of control. While City were riding high and their confidence was growing.
Aguero back on the team sheet and now back score sheet in the 9th minute
The game was heating up in Manchester as City piled on the pressure and West Brom looked like stunned as a deer in the middle of the road staring into the car's headlights. Dzeko would try his luck from distance but his shot would fly over the crossbar. Next Mulumbu would would foul just outside the box and give City a set piece opportunity. The free kick would go all wrong as City still find themselves without their dead ball specialist Yaya Toure who is still on the injured list. As City attempted to play it to Silva West Brom would intercept and break on the counter. Dorrans would play a nice one two with Vydra and then take a clever touch to get past Clichy and volley home into the bottom right corner beating Hart and snatching a goal back for the visitors in the 15th minute.
Graham Dorrans breaks his scoring drought after almost two years without a goal
The game would ease up after the goal as City lost a little zest they had in the first 15 minutes of the game. City still dominated the possession but besides that they failed to really trouble West Brom's goal. The Baggies defended tightly down the centre and pushed City out wide hoping to be able to dominate the air utilising their slight height advantage. West Brom were holding on well but a moments lapse by Olsson in the back would be costly as City made it 3-1 in the 36th minute. Nasri played in a looping cross from the corner kick into the 6 yard box. Olsson was caught ball watching and allowed Demichelis to get in front of him and then tap home at the back post totally unmarked. West Brom in trouble once again but could they possibly find a way to break once again and catch City on the counter before the halftime whistle.West Brom finished the half with some strong play and finally got to enjoy some possession of their own in Man City's half too. Sessegnon should have brought the Baggies to within one goal in the closing stages of the half but his shot from inside the box would be denied by some desperate defending by the City captain as Kompany slid in at the last moment to get a crucial touch and deflect the ball away from the goal. Chris Brunt too would have an opportunity from a long way out as West Brom were awarded a free kick just before the whistle sounded. He would blast his shot high over the crossbar as the ref's whistle sounded soon after. 3-1 and a highly entertaining game as both teams playing some nice attacking football.
Demichelis would restore City's two goal advantage as City lead 3-1 at halftime
City out of the gates strong in the second half as they looked to expand on their 2 goal lead. The game also picked up the pace too as West Brom were countering well down the wings but were failing to get enough players forward to trouble the City defenders. Pepe Mel would need to look at his bench to increase their chances to get a result from this match. The change would come in the 60th minute as Anichebe would come on for Vydra to add some pace up front for the Baggies. City pressed on but West Brom defended well limiting their chances. Then City suffered a big blow as David Silva, their crafty midfielder, was stretchered off with what looked to be an ankle strain. Milner was brought on by Pellegrini as he needed to ensure his team kept the pressure on the West Brom goal. West Brom then enjoyed a good spell of possession. They pushed high up the pitch and applied some pressure of their own on Hart and his goal. A shot from distance would test the England goalkeeper but he dove well and fisted the shot clear. Pepe Mel noticed the change of direction in the game and would bring on Berahino for the last 15 minutes to see if West Brom could try and steal a point from the game. Though in the end City were just too strong and West Brom left the fight back too late as City increase the pressure on Liverpool and also Chelsea before their big clash this weekend.
Ciao for now Readers