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Barclays Premier League

Etihad Stadium (ATT 47,286) 19th January 2013 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: J Moss

Man City Manchester City vs Fulham Fulham

Man City 2

D Silva (2, 69)

ft

Fulham 0

Premier League: David Silva bagged a brace as Manchester City saw off Fulham

Last Updated: 20/01/13 10:43am

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A deadly double from David Silva saw Manchester City to a 2-0 victory over Fulham and to within four points of table-topping Manchester United.

City's Spanish playmaker opened the scoring with just 95 seconds on the clock at the Etihad Stadium, with an Edin Dzeko effort from the edge of the box parried into his path by Mark Schwarzer.

Best of the match

  • Man of the match: David Silva. In a game of few standout displays, the match-winner has to get the nod.
  • Goal of the match: Silva's second rounded off a flowing move, with the Spaniard able to dink the ball delicately over Mark Schwarzer and in off the post.
  • Moment of the match: Fulham needed to keep themselves in the tie for as long as possible, but found themselves behind and chasing with just 95 seconds on the clock.
  • Talking point: Are Manchester City back in the groove and ready to defend their title? Can Fulham do enough to steer themselves clear of relegation trouble?

Silva's second of the afternoon arrived on 69 minutes, with a flowing move involving Gael Clichy and Carlos Tevez expertly finished off with a composed finish which glanced in off the post.

City looked to be in confident mood from the off and made a blistering start as Dzeko took up an early attack and was allowed to shoot from 25 yards. Schwarzer parried his fierce effort but Fulham had been caught short and Silva followed up to rifle in the rebound.

Fulham were unable to get anything going in response and Gareth Barry took command in midfield.

James Milner started to come into the game on the City right and linked well with Pablo Zabaleta before floating an inviting cross into the box but it dropped inches over Tevez's head.

The game went quiet as Fulham tried to take the pace out of City but the hosts still looked the most likely side and Tevez raced across the area before having a shot blocked by Brede Hangeland.

Fulham played a patient game and tried to build slowly but it yielded little until just after the half hour when Damien Duff found room on the right. Steve Sidwell got free at the back post and was picked out by a good cross from Duff but his glancing header struck the outside of the post.

Fulham made a positive start to the second half as they created a chance for Sidwell outside the area but he sliced well wide and City upped the tempo.

City saw Zabaleta, their only fit right-back, forced off shortly after the hour mark, but were able to cope without him for the rest of the afternoon and doubled their lead soon after his exit following some brilliant play by Tevez and Silva.

City put pressure back on United

The Spaniard started the move, finding Clichy out wide and the left-back's pass inside was cleverly flicked back into Silva's path by Tevez. Silva then did the rest, running into the area and hitting a delicate left-foot lob over Schwarzer to score off the post.

The crowd were still celebrating the goal when Silva went close to claiming a hat-trick, running through in almost identical fashion but this time rolling a low shot inches wide of the far post.

Thereafter City were never in any danger and played plenty of possession football and almost carved out chances at will. Dzeko should have scored a third in injury time but somehow scooped over from six yards with the goal at his mercy.

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Matches

Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Liverpool 34 77
2 Chelsea 34 75
3 Manchester City 32 70
4 Everton 33 66
5 Arsenal 33 64
6 Tottenham Hotspur 34 60
7 Manchester United 33 57
8 Southampton 34 48
9 Newcastle United 34 46
10 Stoke City 34 43
11 West Ham United 33 37
12 Crystal Palace 33 37
13 Hull City 33 36
14 Aston Villa 33 34
15 Swansea City 34 33
16 West Bromwich Albion 33 33
17 Norwich City 34 32
18 Fulham 34 30
19 Cardiff City 34 29
20 Sunderland 32 25

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