Manchester City rule over pathetic United in Old Trafford Derby
Premier League champions Manchester City cruised to a 2-0 win over struggling Manchester United in their Derby at Old Trafford on Saturday.
Gifted two goals by United in the first half, City were happy to control the game after the break, while their hosts failed to present any sort of real threat.
It was ultimately a disappointing Derby with City’s superiority in all areas confirmed abundantly while Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side showed once again they simply lack enough quality to mount even a token title bid.
United are now winless in their last four home league games, losing three of them.
City were handed an ideal start, going ahead in the seventh minute with an own goal from United defender Eric Bailly, who stretched out a leg but turned a low Joao Cancelo cross into his own net.
Cristiano Ronaldo forced Ederson into a full-stretch save with a fine volley, but that turned out to be United’s sole effort on the City goal.
United, shaky at the back despite playing a three- man central defence, relied on goalkeeper David De Gea to keep them in the game as the Spaniard made a series of saves.
De Gea smothered a close range effort from Gabriel Jesus and tipped over a long-range shot from Cancelo before reacting well to stop another potential own goal after Victor Lindelof turned a low Phil Foden ball towards his own net.
The Spanish keeper then rose to the challenge again to deny Kevin De Bruyne as City searched for a second.
But just before the break, Pep Guardiola’s side profited from more woeful United defending with Luke Shaw inexplicably leaving a Cancelo cross deep to the back post, allowing Bernardo Silva to sneak in and poke a shot goalward that crept past De Gea. It was a moment which undid all of De Gea’s work and left United with a mountain to climb in the second half. In truth, however, they hardly got to base camp.
Substitute Jadon Sancho brought some life to United on the wing but there was no real pressure on City’s unruffled back line, while at the other end the visitor’s twice could have added to their tally.
De Bruyne at the back post blasted a volley wide and then Foden drilled a low shot wide of De Gea’s left-hand post.
“We had the game of our lives today. Everything went right, a lot of possession and chances. We dominated from start to finish,” said Foden.
Leaders Chelsea were held to a surprise 1-1 home draw by struggling Burnley after the visitors’ substitute Matej Vydra struck out of the blue late in the game to cancel out a Kai Havertz opener.
The result left Chelsea on 26 points from 11 games, three more than second-placed City.
Goalkeeper Nick Pope kept Burnley afloat early on as he denied Callum Hudson-Odoi and Jorginho but was powerless in the 33rd minute as Reece James and Germany forward Havertz combined to devastating effect.
James found space on the right flank and delivered an inch-perfect cross for Havertz to head low into the far corner from eight metres past Pope, who remained rooted to his line.
Chelsea kept pressing after the break as Thiago Silva’s header shaved the outside of the post before Havertz lofted a close-range shot over the bar and Pope blocked a Hudson-Odoi effort with a reflex save.
Those misses proved costly as Burnley levelled after their first meaningful raid, with Ashley Westwood swinging in a teasing cross which Jay Rodriguez nodded down for Vydra to tap in from close range in the 79th minute.
Aston Villa suffered a fifth successive league defeat as Adam Armstrong’s stunning early strike earned Southampton a deserved 1-0 home victory on Friday. Former Blackburn Rovers forward Armstrong had not scored since his debut on the opening game of the season but ended his drought in powerful strike in the third minute.
A lacklustre Villa were fortunate not to be further behind before halftime as Southampton wasted some good chances and although they improved after the break Dean Smith’s side did not do enough to merit a point.