Manchester City vs. West Bromwich Albion  4 - 0

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Premier League: Manchester City 4 West Brom 0

11 April 2012 23:15

Manchester City worked their way back into the title race after outclassing West Bromwich Albion 4-0 at Etihad Stadium.

The home side took an early 1-0 lead thanks to Sergio Aguero's sixth-minute strike past Ben Foster, before second-half goals from Aguero, Carlos Tevez and David Silva capped a fine performance from Roberto Mancini's men.

Both sides started in confident fashion, and each had early attempts on goal, with Simon Cox dragging a shot wide for West Brom after a nervy clearance by City captain Vincent Kompany, and Aguero seeing a shot blocked.

Aguero was not to be denied with his second chance, netting the opener in the sixth minute after surging forward and shooting past Foster from just inside the penalty area.

With West Brom struggling to keep possession, City took a stranglehold on the match with Silva, Tevez and Micah Richards all coming close to extending the advantage before half-time.

The hosts retained control after the interval and saw Samir Nasri flash a first-time volley just wide of the near post after a superb cross from Silva.

The persistent pressure paid off in the 53rd minute, with Nasri threading a pass to Aguero, who finished calmly for a 2-0 lead.

Aguero turned provider seven minutes later, playing a square ball into the penalty area that was finished with aplomb by Tevez, who celebrated his first start since September with a goal.

Argentine Aguero was again involved in City's fourth, picking the ball up around the centre circle and finding Silva, who chipped his finish over the onrushing Foster.

Adam Johnson made some headway on the left-hand side for City in the closing stages, but the score stayed at 4-0 as Mancini's side cut Manchester United's lead atop the standings to five points.

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Premier League preview: Manchester City v West Bromwich Albion

10 April 2012 08:21

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini faces a selection headache ahead of his side's clash with West Bromwich Albion on Wednesday.

With Mario Balotelli suspended thanks to his red card from Sunday's 1-0 loss to Arsenal, Mancini will have to reform his attacking structure.

But with Yaya Toure and David Silva doubtful starters due to injury, it will not be easy for City's boss.

Toure limped off against Arsenal with a knee injury and Silva missed out altogether, also with a knee problem.

For Mancini, the solution may be Carlos Tevez.

The Argentine has yet to start a game since his mid-season exile but with City trailing Manchester United by eight points in the race for the Premier League title with six games to go, it may be time for Mancini to roll the dice and put his faith in Tevez.

City have won just once in their past five Premier League games and desperately need to get back on track against West Brom.

Roy Hodgson's side ended a four-game winless streak on Saturday, triumphing 3-0 over Blackburn.

That win included a welcome clean sheet as well, after Hodgson's men conceded eight goals in their four games without victory.

Defence has been a problem for West Brom this season with just seven clean sheets managed.

That defensive record could allow City's misfiring striker Edin Dzeko to break his scoring drought.

Dzeko has not scored in six Premier League matches and has just three goals in the league in 2012.

But the Bosnia and Herzegovina international will almost certainly play some role at home due to Balotelli's absence.

West Brom head into Wednesday's match 13th on the table and 11 points clear of the relegation zone.

With safety pretty much secured, Hodgson's side could provide City with the easy win they so desperately need.

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 38 +64 89
2 38 +56 89
3 38 +25 70
4 38 +25 69
5 38 +5 65
6 38 +19 64
7 38 +10 56
8 38 +7 52
9 38 -3 52
10 38 -7 47
11 38 -7 47
12 38 -14 47
13 38 -1 45
14 38 -17 45
15 38 -20 43
16 38 -16 38
17 38 -23 37
18 38 -31 36
19 38 -30 31
20 38 -42 25