City keep pace in title chase; Kane's double carries Spurs

BY foxsports • February 2, 2016

Sergio Aguero served up a reminder that there is life before Josep Guardiola as Manchester City maintained their Barclays Premier League title challenge with a hard-fought victory at Sunderland.

The Argentina international's 17th goal of the season was enough to claim a 1-0 win at the Stadium of Light, where the Black Cats suggested they could yet dig themselves out of relegation trouble.

City were far from at their best and it took fine saves by keeper Joe Hart to deny Jermain Defoe, who found himself embroiled in a running battle with defenders Martin Demichelis and Nicolas Otamendi, Billy Jones and substitute Wahbi Khazri in front of a crowd of 38,852.

But Aguero's 16th-minute strike proved sufficient to keep current boss Manuel Pellegrini, taking charge of his 100th Premier League game, on track for an unprecedented quadruple.

NORWICH CITY 0, TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 3

Harry Kane scored a brace as Tottenham moved above rivals Arsenal in the Premier League with a 3-0 victory at Norwich.

Dele Alli scored inside two minutes to open the scoring for the hosts before Kane doubled Tottenham's advantage from the spot on the half-hour mark. While Norwich were greatly improved after the interval, it was Kane who completed a fine night for Spurs, with his second goal in injury time.

Tottenham, who recorded their fifth straight victory in all competitions, keep alive their dreams of winning a first league title since 1961. But Norwich, now with four league defeats in as many matches, remain two points above the relegation zone.

MANCHESTER UNITED 3, STOKE CITY 0

Manchester United eased the pressure on Louis van Gaal as they blew away Stoke with a fine display of ruthless attacking football in a 3-0 win at Old Trafford.

The announcement of Guardiola's appointment at Manchester City, and a fruitless transfer deadline day, had led to more pessimism among United's long-suffering support before kickoff.

The United fans booed their team off following the last game here - a 1-0 defeat to Southampton. But they had something to cheer about on Tuesday as United pummelled Stoke in their one of their best performances of the campaign.

Wayne Rooney moved to within five goals of Sir Bobby Charlton's all-time scoring record with his seventh goal in seven games and Jesse Lingard nodded in a fine ball from Cameron Borthwick-Jackson to put United ahead in the 14th minute.

The goal of the night belonged to the excellent Anthony Martial for his curler from the far corner in the 23rd minute past Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland.  

WEST HAM 2, ASTON VILLA 0

Jordan Ayew was sent off in disgrace as Aston Villa were shoved a step closer to relegation following a 2-0 defeat at West Ham.

Ghana striker Ayew left his struggling side in the lurch when he was dismissed for a vicious elbow into the face of Aaron Cresswell after just 17 minutes. And it was Villa who ended up with a bloody nose after Michail Antonio and Cheikhou Kouyate struck in the second half to end the 10 men's resistance.

Rock-bottom Villa were actually well on top, having forced a couple of corners and seen a reasonable penalty shout turned down when Gabriel Agbonlahor's cross hit Antonio's arm.

CRYSTAL PALACE 1, BOURNEMOUTH 2

Bournemouth secured a vital victory in their pursuit of Premier League survival with a deserved 2-1 away win over Crystal Palace.

Recovering from conceding the opening goal to Scott Dann, they went seven points clear of the relegation zone after Marc Pugh and Benik Afobe scored either side of halftime.

The result leaves 11th-placed Palace winless in the league since Dec. 19, and perhaps more importantly further away from finishing in the top six which had once looked a realistic ambition.

WEST BROMWICH ALBION 1, SWANSEA CITY 1

Salomon Rondon rescued a point for West Brom with a stoppage-time equalizer to deny Swansea victory at The Hawthorns.

It looked like Gylfi Sigurdsson's goal would continue Swansea's revival under Francesco Guidolin with a third straight win and see the Welsh side go above West Brom in the Premier League table.

But Lukasz Fabianski, who had been in decent form on the night, was finally beaten in the second minute of time added on when Rondon blasted the ball home from close range after a scramble inside the six-yard box, and it finished 1-1.



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