EPL: City close on title with Everton win

Manchester City moved to within one win of clinching the Premier League title by beating Everton 3-1 on Saturday evening by virtue of an exhilarating first-half performance.
Goals from Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling set up an impressive win at Goodison Park, which means that victory over Manchester United next weekend would make City champions.
Prior to kickoff, Everton were the only side that Pep Guardiola had failed to beat in his Premier League tenure, with the Toffees inflicting the Spaniard’s heaviest ever managerial defeat in this fixture last season.
The Citizens began to put that ghost to bed after just four minutes as Sane met David Silva’s cross with the sweetest of left-footed volleys, which curled away from Jordan Pickford and just inside the post.
Sane’s outstanding skill helped set up a fluent City second, as he juggled the ball and lifted it over Phil Jagielka’s head before releasing Kevin De Bruyne to cross for Jesus to convert a simple 12th-minute header.
City were threatening to run rampant in the opening half an hour as Silva and Sterling went close with speculative shots, and Kyle Walker squandered a good chance when his left foot scuffed a Sane cutback.
Everton have a full-back who is much more proficient on his left foot, and Leighton Baines had minutes before gone close to stemming the City tide with a free kick which dipped over the wall but curled just wide.
Baines was guilty of playing Silva onside in the build-up to City’s third goal on 37 minutes, with the Spaniard getting in behind the Everton right to deliver an inch-perfect ball for Sterling to sweep home from eight yards.
Pickford prevented further damage for the Toffees 10 minutes after the break when he reacted quickly to push away a Fernandinho drive which had wrong-footed him with a big deflection off Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
At the other end, Ederson was caught a little unsighted as Yannick Bolasie’s 25-yard shot went through the legs of Walker and snuck in at the City goalkeeper’s near post to reduce Everton’s deficit on 63 minutes.
A famous comeback could have been on had Cenk Tosun, who had scored four goals in his last three matches, steered his header inside the post after climbing above Walker from a corner moments later.
However, City soon regained control of possession – finishing with an all-time Premier League high of 82% – to safely close out a 27th win from 31 league matches this season, and Guardiola’s 50th in the competition.
Now just one more will see City crowned champions for a third time in six years, while Everton move on to the small matter of a Merseyside derby, after Liverpool face their conquers in the Champions League.