Soccer-Man City go top after thrashing Luton, Spurs crash


Soccer Football - Premier League - Manchester City v Luton Town - Etihad Stadium, Manchester, Britain - April 13, 2024 Manchester City's Erling Braut Haaland scores their third goal from the penalty spot REUTERS/Molly Darlington

LONDON (Reuters) -Champions Manchester City turned up the heat on their Premier League title rivals with a 5-1 home win over relegation-threatened Luton Town to move top of the table on Saturday.

With Arsenal and Liverpool both playing on Sunday, City marched above them with a rampant display to move to 73 points from 32 games. Arsenal (71) host fourth-placed Aston Villa while Liverpool (71) welcome Crystal Palace.

It was a statement win by City in their chase for an unprecedented fourth successive English title and more evidence that any team finishing above them will have to be near-perfect between now and the end of the season.

Tottenham Hotspur's hopes of finishing fourth and ensuring a Champions League berth were dealt a blow as they were hammered 4-0 at Newcastle United who moved into sixth place to boost their own European hopes.

Manchester United dropped to seventh as they drew 2-2 at Bournemouth in the late kickoff, Bruno Fernandes twice equalising to earn his side a point.

At the bottom, Brentford eased away from trouble with a 2-0 home win against Sheffield United for whom time is running out.

Nottingham Forest missed the chance to do the same as they were held to a 2-2 draw at home by Wolverhampton Wanderers. Forest are in 17th place, one point above third-from bottom Luton Town and six ahead of 19th-placed Burnley who drew 1-1 at home to Brighton and Hove Albion.

City needed 65 seconds to go ahead against Luton with Erling Haaland's wayward volley smashing into the face of Luton's Daiki Hashioka and into the net.

Luton hung in grimly but Mateo Kovacic's strike made it 2-0 before Haaland converted a penalty for his 20th league goal of the season.

Jeremy Doku and Josko Gvardiol were also on target for City, with Ross Barkley grabbing a consolation for Luton.

PRESSURE ON

"The only way is to win our games and put the pressure on. Luton is a difficult game, okay we scored five goals. This is the only message we can do," City manager Pep Guardiola said.

Tottenham could have moved three points above Villa in the scrap for fourth place but were blown away by a clinical Newcastle who struck twice in two first-half minutes as Alexander Isak and Anthony Gordon punished poor defending.

Isak made it 3-0 to take his league tally for the season to 17 and Fabian Schar added a fourth late on.

Tottenham dropped to fifth below Villa on goal difference.

"Newcastle were good, credit to them, I thought they were really good today. We just didn't really get a grip of the game at all," Spurs manager Ange Postecoglou said.

Manchester United allowed Bournemouth 20 goal attempts and were lucky to trail only 2-1 at halftime to Dominic Solanke's 17th league goal of the season and an effort by Justin Kluivert after Fernandes had equalised with a volley.

Fernandes netted a second-half penalty to make it 2-2 but United could not snatch a first win in four league games and stayed 10 points behind fourth-placed Aston Villa.

"The second half was much better, the good thing is we fought back twice," manager Erik Ten Had said.

Brentford moved up to 14th as Thomas Frank's side ended a winless run of nine Premier League games thanks to an own goal by Sheffield United's Oliver Arblaster and Frank Onyeka's first for the club.

Matheus Cunha scored twice for Wolverhampton Wanderers in his first start for two months to deny Forest a vital three points in their bid to stay up.

Cunha gave Wolves the lead with a superb solo goal, before the excellent Morgan Gibbs-White equalised on the stroke of halftime and Danilo put Forest in front.

A mistake by goalkeeper Matz Sels, however, allowed Cunha to earn his side a point.

Burnley will also rue a missed opportunity as they were held 1-1 by Brighton -- an embarrassing own goal by goalkeeper Arijanet Muric costing them the three points.

Substitute Josh Brownhill put the home side ahead but Burnley's joy was short-lived as Muric allowed a Sander Berge back pass to roll under his foot.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Pritha Sarkar and Ed Osmond)

Follow us on our official WhatsApp channel for breaking news alerts and key updates!
   

Next In Football

Soccer-Real Madrid seeking to establish new Champions League dynasty
Judge puts ex-Barcelona player Pique under official investigation in Saudi soccer case
Soccer-McKenna extends Ipswich stay after reported Manchester Utd interest
Soccer-Eriksen completes fairytale return to Denmark's Euro squad
Soccer-Norwich appoint 35-year-old Thorup as head coach
Soccer-Leverkusen double a boost for Germany going into Euro 24, say champions
Soccer-Red Bull takes minority ownership stake in Leeds United
Soccer-Kompany to demand aggression and bravery from Bayern players
Soccer-Dortmund bank on solid defence, quick transitions against Real
Soccer-Macarthur midfielder Baccus in court on bet-fixing charges

Others Also Read