Fulham vs Manchester City: Match Report

Manchester City further extended their lead at the top of the table with a comfortable win at relegation threatened Fulham, with John Stones, Gabriel Jesus and a Sergio Aguero penalty putting the visitors just four wins from the title.

The goals all came in the first 15 minutes of the second half, as a mixture of high pressure and poor defending resulted in a tight game very quickly disappearing out of sight.

At first, it was hard to believe the Cottagers were as low as 18th position, as they started confidently with and without the ball in a continuation of their recent excellent form. They pressed from the front, with City struggling to work the ball into meaningful positions.

Slowly, the visitors asserted a stranglehold on possession, and the first clear chance came as Joao Cancelo cleverly slipped in Ferran Torres, only for Alphonse Areola to save well with his legs.

Despite their increasing territory, City’s only other clear first half chance came as a result of brilliant individual play by Bernardo Silva, as he drifted inside on his left foot past three challenges but then shot tamely at Areola.

Half time: Fulham 0-0 Manchester City

The hosts had defended well in the opening 45, but their complete lack of cutting edge up top meant that a goalless draw seemed their only feasible chance of a positive result.

It only took 70 seconds for that hope to vanish.

Cancelo curled in a low freekick from the left, and Stones found himself completely unmarked as he prodded in on the volley from close range for his fourth goal in 10 games.

It was a desperately poor goal to concede, yet 10 minutes later it got worse for the home side.

After overplaying in a dangerous area, Ivan Cavaleiro then underhit his pass back to Joachim Andersen, with the defender sliding in a despairing attempt to clear as Jesus closed in. The ball smacked off the legs of Cavaleiro, and suddenly Jesus was in on goal.

The Brazilian has been guilty of missing multiple 1v1 chances this season, but this time he showed excellent composure to go around Areola and hammer the ball in past Tosin on the line.

Fulham seemed shaken, and not even two minutes later another horrendous defensive error saw City given the chance to put the game beyond doubt.

This time it was Tosin, with his attempted flick closed down by Torres and sending the Spaniard into the box. In attempting to rectify his error, the former City defender could only trip Torres for a blatant penalty.

Aguero, having not scored a Premier League goal for 14 months, stepped up. Aguero, powerfully, sent the ball low past Areola for 3-0.

As has been the case recently, City were happy to play out the remaining time to save legs, while Fulham seemed grateful for the chance to minimise the damage to their goal difference.

The hosts did manage one chance, as substitute Aleksandar Mitrovic played in Cavaleiro, but an excellent last ditch slide tackle by Aymeric Laporte deflected the shot away for a corner.

At full time, City could be content with yet another away win, while Fulham can take pride in their recent performances and points. If they continue their current form, there are other sides looking far more likely for relegation.

Full time: Fulham 0-3 Manchester City

Man of the Match: Bernardo Silva

It was not the most dramatic match, but the Portuguese has clearly found his form again. The only man looking like creating an opportunity in the first half, his constant runs and clever movement slowly wore down the Fulham defence, and he was unlucky not to finish with either a goal or an assist.

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