Newcastle 0-4 Man City: Joao Cancelo rocket helps secure Christmas top spot

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  • Manchester City
    Manchester City
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  • João Pedro Cavaco Cancelo
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  • Riyad Mahrez
    Riyad Mahrez
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 (Manchester City FC via Getty Ima)
(Manchester City FC via Getty Ima)

Manchester City will spend Christmas top of the Premier League after Joao Cancelo’s superb performance helped the defending champions cruise past Newcastle on Sunday afternoon.

The full-back set up Ruben Dias’ opener with help from some comical Newcastle defending and then doubled the lead with a superb strike, before second half goals from Riyad Mahrez and Raheem Sterling capped a 4-0 win which moves City four points clear of Liverpool, who face Tottenham later in the day.

Six Premier League fixtures were called off across the course of the weekend but City, so far, remain unaffected by the surge in Covid cases across the division.

They were gifted the opening goal when Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka conceded a cheap corner and was then involved in a mix-up with defender Ciaran Clark which allowed Dias to nod home Cancelo’s hooked delivery.

Cancelo doubled the lead after a smart turn away from Joe Willock in midfield, the Portuguese afforded too much space on the edge of the box as he arrowed a strike into the top corner.

Newcastle might have pulled one back before the interval but were somehow denied a clear penalty when a sliding Ederson cleaned out Ryan Fraser inside the box, with VAR opting not to intervene.

However, it was called into action midway through the second half, when Mahrez’s volley from Oleksandr Zinchenko’s cross was initially chalked for offside, only for replays to show the Algerian had been played on.

Cancelo then played a hand in the fourth goal, his diagonal ball finding Gabriel Jesus, who drove into the box before finding Sterling for a trademark back-post tap-in.

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