Manchester City and Manchester United faced each other in a tremendously important tie in the Premier League title race, but Pep Guardiola‘s men came out on top with a dominant 4-1 win to maintain their lead over second-placed Liverpool.

City began the game in blistering fashion and it took just five minutes for the hosts to find the back of the net via Kevin de Bruyne, who coolly converted from a Bernardo Silva cross.

Despite City’s onslaught in the opening minutes, United, who were without Cristiano Ronaldo, showed tremendous character to stay in the game, and even came close to equalising in the 8th minute.

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However, it did not take the away side too long to equalise: a defence splitting pass from Paul Pogba found Jadon Sancho in space on the left hand side in the 22nd minute, and the winger took a beautiful curled shot to guide the ball past Ederson and into the far corner.

United’s goal energised the away supporters, but the Red Devils could not hold on to their lead as de Bruyne capitalised on chaos in the United box to score in the 28th minute.

Despite more chances at both ends, the score remained 2-1 in City’s favour at half-time.

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Guardiola’s men began the second half in characteristic, dominant fashion, and it took mere minutes for City to start creating dangerous chances.

Phil Foden came close to extending City’s lead in the 50th minute but shot wide. As the game went on, more chances came City’s way, but Guardiola’s team could not find the back of the net thanks to some stubborn goalkeeping by David de Gea.

However, City’s continued efforts to extended their lead eventually paid off when Riyad Mahrez converted from a de Bruyne corner in the 68th minute.

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As the game went on, City increased their control over the game, and added to their lead via a Mahrez goal in stoppage time.

The match finished 4-1 in City’s favour, keeping the Premier League leaders at the top of the table. City now have 69 points from 28 games, while second-placed Liverpool have 63 points from 27 games.

United, meanwhile, saw yet another opportunity to advance up the table pass by, and remain fifth in the Premier League table. While United have 47 points from 28 games, the Red Devils face quite a challenge in terms of making it to the top-four as fourth-placed Arsenal already have 48 points and three games in hand over United.