Manchester City Defeat Aston Villa to Close in on Arsenal [Video Highlights]

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Manchester City have returned to winning ways with a big win over Aston Villa in the Premier League to keep the pressure on league leaders Arsenal.

Starting Lineup

Pep Guardiola handed Reuben Dias his first start after the World Cup, and shuffled the team, making changes to the team that lost to Tottenham at the London Stadium.

Kevin De Bruyne, Laporte, and Gundogan were all given a start, while the likes of Akanji, Lewis Alvarez, and Ake were dropped to the bench.

Unai Emery made only one change to the team that lost to Leicester City, leaving out injured Tyrone Mings and bringing in Chambers.

Manchester City: Ederson; Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias, Aymeric Laporte; Rodri, Ilkay Gundogan; Riyad Mahrez, Kevin De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva, Jack Grealish; Erling Haaland.

Aston Villa: Emiliano Martinez; Ashley Young, Calum Chambers, Ezri Konsa, Lucas Digne; Boubacar Kamara, Douglas Luiz; Leon Bailey, Jacob Ramsey, Emiliano Buendia; Ollie Watkins.

Manchester City

Manchester City went into the game, having slipped to third place on the log after two late goals by Manchester United against Leeds lift the Red Devils into third place.

Nevertheless, City have played two games less than their city rival, but needed a win to return to the second spot.

The first leg between the two sides ended in a draw. Aston Villa hoped to salvage a point from the game after losing to Leicester City, but Unai Emery could not handle City’s intensity at the Etihad.

After suffering their fourth defeat this season at London Stadium, Pep Guardiola hoped to use the Villa game to bounce back to winning ways.

Manchester City

Meanwhile, they have shown dominance in all their last 12 home matches against Aston Villa.

Last season, Villa nearly stripped them of the Premier League title when they took a surprise two-goal lead in the first half In the last 2021/22 Premier League fixture, giving Liverpool an edge.

After the first half shock, the tides turned in the second half. Manchester City produced a stunning comeback, scoring three past the visitors to emerge Premier League champions.

After 21 games this season, City are six points behind leaders Arsenal and needed a win to close the point gap to three points.

The referee set the game rolling and City held sway over Aston Villa, dominating possession and taking absolute control of the game.

Just 4 minutes into the game, City took the lead after the first corner kick.

Manchester City

Ryad Mahrez delivered a perfect outswinger and Rodri quickly picked his pace and raced to pass Kamara to the near post and headed home into the bottom-left corner to give City the lead.

Emiliano Martinez nearly keep off the ball but failed as the ball bounced into the net.

After taking the lead, City continued to hold sway over the game and made attempts to double the lead.

In the 39th minute, Gundogan made it 2-0 for the home side with an assist from Erling Haaland.

Aston Villa were in disarray, losing possession at ease, and falling out on duels. A rickety defending compounded their woes and gave Manchester City a big leverage.

At the cusp of the end of the first half, Villa conceded a penalty and Ryad Mahrez converted perfectly to sink Villa and extend the lead to three unreplied goals.

Aston Villa just lay hands on only 31% of the ball possession and failed to record a single shot on target throughout the first half.

The second half saw City continue from where they stopped, controlling proceedings and dominating play.

Aston Villa’s Bailey and Watkins dropped deep into their half as City continue to push for another goal.

Villa failed to create a clear chance and rarely had a touch in the opponents’ box. For Unai Emery, the game has already gone the way of Manchester City. They just needed to stop conceding more goals.

In the 61st minute, Watkins made the scoreline respectable by putting one back for Aston Villa. The match ended in a 3-1 win as Manchester City reduced the gap between them and first placed Arsenal by three points.

Video Highlights

https://youtu.be/quxjUQbS1tM

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