Monday, 29 August 2011

Match Report:Tottenham 1 Manchester City 5

Edin Dzeko scored four as Manchester City maintained their 100% start to the season with an awesome display. Dzeko prodded in from close range from a left-wing cross from Samir Nasri, who was outstanding on his City debut. Peter Crouch headed a good chance to equalise wide before another Nasri cross was neatly headed in by Dzeko. In the second half Dzeko tapped in his third, Sergio Aguero fired in after a mazy run, Younes Kaboul headed one back but Dzeko curled a sublime fifth. After their first match of the season against Everton was postponed because of the London riots, Spurs always knew their start to the campaign would be tough, and having lost at Manchester United they found City even more formidable opponents. Spurs manager Harry Redknapp was not allowed to include new recruit Emmanuel Adebayor under the terms of his loan from City, but was able to field Luka Modric for the first time this season. Modric, still linked with a move to Chelsea, was unable to have much influence in a central-midfield partnership with Niko Kranjcar that was over-run by the fluidity of City, simply irresistible going forward. In the early exchanges there were chances at both ends, David Silva testing Brad Friedel with a stinging drive and then drifting effortlessly across the defence and forcing the veteran goalkeeper into another save. Rafael van der Vaart orchestrated the best moments for Spurs, but his shot on the turn and curling free-kick were both turned around the post by Joe Hart. Gareth Bale was kept largely quiet by the returning Pablo Zabaleta but the wide man had a golden opportunity to open the scoring when a delightful Spurs move ended with Aaron Lennon's cross falling to him in space 10 yards out, but he sliced over the bar. Nasri, Aguero and Silva provided some mesmerising moments going forward and soon ensured they were rewarded for their invention. After some delightfully intricate passing at pace, Nasri sent over a perfect left-wing cross for Dzeko who poked in on the volley from six yards. Bale's one moment of brilliance produced a magnificent driven cross which fell perfectly for Crouch but the striker, linked alongside Wilson Palacios with a move to Sunderland, could not direct his diving header on target. City extended their lead when Nasri drifted clear on the left again and crossed for Dzeko, who flicked a back header beyond Friedel in the manner of Javier Hernandez's goal at Stoke last term. Tottenham's hopes of a second-half recovery receded when the threat of Lennon was ended by a groin problem and Dzeko soon completed his hat-trick from barely a yard out, converting Yaya Toure's cutback from the right-hand byline after a devastating overlap. Aguero added a memorable strike when a flash of pace enabled him to wriggle free of Michael Dawson's lunge and he sent an unstoppable shot into the top corner. Kaboul, having endured a torrid afternoon against the subtlety of City's a la carte menu of attacking players, gained some consolation when he rose to head in a Van der Vaart corner. The Netherlands international joined a growing injury list when he hobbled off with hamstring trouble to reduce Spurs to 10 men and Redknapp will hope to add to his squad before they try to gain their first league points away at Wolves on 10 September. There was still time for one more moment of magic from City, Dzeko exchanging passes with Gareth Barry and curling a measured shot past a dejected Friedel into the top corner.

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