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MAN CITY v SUNDERLAND RECAP: De Bruyne stars in comfortable City win over Black Cats

Manchester City bridged the gap with league leaders Leicester City by hammering Sunderland 4-1 on Saturday.

Manuel Pellegrini's men dominated proceedings at the Etihad Stadium on Boxing Day thanks to a starring performance from Kevin De Bruyne.

The Belgian delivered a pinpoint cross from the right flank for Raheem Sterling to head home in the 13th minute before Yaya Toure fired home with his left foot from outside the 'D' less than five minutes later.

De Bruyne's 22nd-minute free-kick found the head of Wilfried Bony who glanced beyond Vito Mannone from beyond the penalty spot before the summer arrival made it 4-0 when following up to slot home with ease on 54 minutes.

Sunderland pulled one back before the hour-mark through Fabio Borini who was given a second chance to beat Joe Hart from a tight angle before the visitors were harshly penalised when Sebastian Coates tripped David Silva outside the area, only for referee Anthony Taylor to point to the spot.

Luckily for the Black Cats, Bony misfired from 12 yards denying City a fifth goal.

The win has City sitting third, a point in arrears of second-placed Arsenal, as Sam Allardyce's struggling Sunderland lost for the fourth straight match to remain second bottom.


MATCH OVERVIEW

Manchester City: 4 (Raheem Sterling 12', Yaya Toure 27', Wilfried Bony 22', Kevin De Bruyne 54')
Sunderland: 1 (Fabio Borini 58')
Etihad Stadium, Manchester - 54,523


TALKING POINTS

- City mixing their form at the minute but their best is irresistible. If they can find consistency, can they win another title?

- Sunderland continuing to falter. They need points badly or will face a serious relegation fight.



WHAT'S NEXT?

Man City take on league leaders Leicester in a crunch clash on Tuesday while Sunderland will be looking for a first win in five when they host Liverpool on Wednesday.



TWITTER INSIGHT


QUOTES CORNER

Man City's Pellegrini on the quality of the victory:

"It was a very important victory, not only because we won the three points but also in the way we played. We returned to our normal performance - playing attractive football, scoring goals."


Sunderland boss Allardyce urges defensive improvement:

"Until we start getting better defensively we are going to struggle to get results. That is our big problem. As a team we do not defend as well as we should do."




STATS SPECIALS
*Thanks to Opta


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