Premier League: Man City win 1-0 at Aston Villa thanks to Carlos Tevez goal
Last Updated: March 5, 2013 12:29am
Manchester City maintained their slim hopes of retaining the Premier League title with a 1-0 win at Aston Villa on Monday evening.
But Carlos Tevez's winning goal in first-half stoppage time means Villa remain in the relegation zone and in danger of being relegated for the first time since 1987.
The home side began brightly and dominated the early stages with Christian Benteke seeing a header cleared off the line by Tevez just after the 20-minute mark.
Jack Rodwell had a left-footed effort at the other end that Brad Guzan tipped over but the former Everton midfielder injured himself in shooting and was replaced by Edin Dzeko.
The arrival of the Bosnian striker perked up a sluggish City and the visitors began to take control of the game with Pablo Zabaleta denied by a combination of Guzan and post in the 37th minute.
Best of the Match:
- Man of the Match: Brad Guzan pulled off a string of saves to give Aston Villa a chance.
- Save of the Match: Guzan's fingertip stop to deny Yaya Toure after the interval.
- Key Moment: Ciaran Clark's slip to allow Edin Dzeko to set up Carlos Tevez for the goal.
- Talking point: Will Aston Villa go down?
The impressive Guzan then saved well from both Tevez and Dzeko as Roberto Mancini's men piled on the pressure with Villa's confidence beginning to drain.
And it was a defensive error from Ciaran Clark that brought the opening goal as he attempted to turn past Dzeko despite being the last man.
The Villa skipper claimed he had been fouled and while there was contact it seemed that he was already on his way down having lost his footing.
Dzeko was able to run through unchallenged before squaring the ball to Tevez who showed great composure to round Guzan before slotting the ball into the net.
Tevez had the chance to double the lead early in the second half but Matthew Lowton was able to clear his effort off the line as Villa became a little ragged in search of an equaliser.
As Villa battled, City showed the greater incision and the visitors had an effort disallowed for offside when Dzeko tucked the ball home after Guzan had tipped Yaya Toure's shot onto the post.
And Mancini's men were able to negotiate the final stages to reduce the gap on leaders Manchester United to 12 points - while leaving Villa supporters fearing the worst.
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Aston Villa v Man City
Yaya and Kolo Toure were delighted to help Manchester City beat Aston Villa 1-0 on Monday night.
Paul Lambert says Ciaran Clark's mistake that led to Manchester City's goal was ridiculous but admits he is a young player who will learn from his error.
Paul Lambert criticised the "ridiculous" goal Aston Villa conceded in their 1-0 defeat to Manchester City.