Manchester City take control of title race with 4-1 win over Arsenal

Sports Desk, Apr 26 (EFE).- Defending Premier League champions Manchester City thrashed current leaders Arsenal 4-1 Wednesday to go just 2 points behind the Gunners with two games in hand.

Kevin de Bruyne had a brace as City put nine shots on target to just two for the visitors from London, who were never really in the contest.

Pep Guardiola’s side are now unbeaten in their last 10 in the Premier League and last 17 in all competitions, while former assistant Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal saw their winless streak stretch to four.

De Bruyne opened the scoring in the 7th minute, assisted by Erling Haaland. The Belgian international would have made it 2-0 in the 26th if not for a timely block by Arsenal defender Ben White.

Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale denied Haaland twice before conceding to John Stones in first-half stoppage time. The flag went up, but a VAR review concluded that no City player was offside and the goal stood.

City’s advantage grew to 3-0 less than 10 minutes into the second half, courtesy of De Bruyne’s second of the night.

Rob Holding clawed back a goal for Arsenal in the 86th minute, but Haaland scored deep in stoppage time and the final was 4-1. It was the Norwegian’s 33rd Premier League goal of the season, and his 49th in all competitions.

The 22-year-old striker set a new record for goals in a 38-game season and needs only two more to surpass Andrew Cole and Alan Shearer, who each scored 34 in a season of 42 matches.

In other action Wednesday, Liverpool nipped West Ham United 2-1 to climb to sixth place on 53 points, the same as Tottenham Hotspur but with a vastly better goal difference.

The Hammers jumped out to the lead in the 12th minute with a goal by Lucas Paqueta, but Cody Gakpo brought the visitors level six minutes later and Joel Matip scored what would prove to be the winner in the 67th minute.

West Ham and their supporters were indignant when the referee failed to award a penalty in the dying minutes after the ball made contact with Thiago Alcantara’s arm.

The Hammers remain 14th, a less-than-comfortable 5 points above the drop zone.

Stumbling Chelsea lost 2-0 to Brentford, their fifth straight defeat since Frank Lampard returned as coach following the dismissal of Graham Potter.

Hosting the Bees at Stamford Bridge, the Blues had most of the ball and the chances, yet found themselves trailing 1-0 at the break on an own goal in the 37th minute by captain Cesar Azpilicueta, who unwittingly deflected Zanka’s header past Kepa.

Lampard made a double-substitution to start the second half, swapping out Azpilicueta for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Conor Gallagher for Myhailo Mudryk.

Chelsea improved with the changes, but failed to put anything past Brentford keeper David Raya, and Bryan Mbeumo’s goal in the 78th minute sealed all 3 points for the Bees, who moved up to ninth place on 47 points.

The Blues are 11th with 39 points.

EFE /dr

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