Premier League: Manchester City 2 Bolton 0
Manchester City cemented their place at the top with a dominant victory over struggling Bolton Wanderers on Saturday.
Goals from Gael Clichy and Mario Balotelli either side of the break proved the difference in a game that could easily have ended in a rout for Owen Coyle's men as the hosts spurned more than 20 chances.
The victory meant Roberto Mancini's men extended their home winning run to an impressive 19 games, equalling the record set by Manchester United last October.
For Bolton, a fourth successive loss for the third time this season continued a miserable run that has seen them remain one place above bottom place on goal difference.
City started on fire and Balotelli rattled the post after two minutes, running onto Yaya Toure’s defence splitting through-ball.
Moments later, the Italian forward spurned another gilt-edged chance when he fired wide from Adam Johnson's cut-back after the ball had got caught under his feet.
The hosts continued to expose the flaws in their visitors' brittle defence and the lively Balotelli failed to break the deadlock once again when he skied over after failing to make the most of a hopeful long-ball that set him free in space.
City's pressure finally paid off when Clichy's long-range effort in the 23rd minute took a deflection off the head of Gretar Steinsson to beat an unfortunate Adam Bogdan at his near post.
After Johnson and Balotelli had wasted further opportunities to increase the lead, Bolton briefly responded.
They conjured their first noteworthy chance just after the half hour mark when David N'Gog forced Joe Hart into a routine save, before Kimi Myachi came even when his sweeping right foot effort drew a magnificent outstretched save from the England stopper.
Bogdan kept Bolton in the game on the stroke of half-time when he saved well from Balotelli, as City took a slender lead into the interval.
The one-way traffic continued after the break as Bogdan brilliantly denied Balotelli yet again after Gareth Barry split the Bolton defence for the umpteenth time.
Yaya Toure powered narrowly wide from outside the box on the hour mark.
Darren Pratley nearly scored a spectacular own goal moments later when he scooped the ball onto the crossbar with Bogdan beaten following a challenge on Edin Dzeko on the edge of the box.
But the clincher arrived in the 70th minute when Johnson skipped through a number of challenges to set up Balotelli to tap home.
City now travel to Sporting on Thursday for their Europa League tie with confidence high.