Manchester City got back to winning ways as they started the New Year with an impressive 3-1 victory at the Etihad Stadium to notch up their 20th league win of the season.
Pep Guardiola’s men ended 2017 with a disappointing 0-0 draw away to Crystal Palace as they lost Gabriel Jesus and Kevin De Bruyne to injuries. Fortunately for the Citizens, De Bruyne was able to recover from the injury scare to start the Watford match. Marco Silva’s Watford lost out to struggling Swansea City under their new boss Carlos Carvalhal in a 2-1 defeat at Vicarage Road as the visitors scored two late goals to seal the three points.
The home side got off to a rapid start as Leroy Sane’s whipped cross found Raheem Sterling unmarked for his 14th league goal after 38 seconds, which is currently the quickest Premier League goal this season. The lead was doubled 12 minutes later as a delightful Kevin de Bruyne cross was turned into his own net by Watford’s Christian Kabasele as the league leaders strengthened their advantage over their opponents. It could have been 3-0 minutes later as De Bruyne’s free-kick forced Heurelho Gomes to tip the ball onto the crossbar.
The third goal of the match came in the 63rd minute as De Bruyne, once again, hit a cross that Gomes failed to fully deal with and gave Sergio Aguero his chance to seal the victory for City and notch up his 13th league goal of the season. The visitors did score a consolation goal with eight minutes remaining as Andre Gary tapped in an low cross from Andre Carrillo.
The home side regained their 15-point advantage over nearest rivals Manchester United in second, which could change depending on Chelsea’s game against Arsenal on Wednesday.
Here are our player ratings from the match.