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Chelsea blaze past Norwich

LONDON, Oct 6, 2012, Reuters: 22:43 IST

Football English Premier League:Londoners open up four-point lead; Man City post easy victory

Chelsea brushed Norwich City aside 4-1 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday to open up a four-point lead at the top of the Premier League after Everton, who were second, drew 2-2 at Wigan Athletic and slipped to third.

Chelsea moved to 19 points as champions Manchester City climbed to second on 15 points after beating Sunderland 3-0 at the Etihad Stadium where Aleksandar Kolarov, Sergio Aguero and James Milner were on target.

Chelsea fell behind to an early Grant Holt goal, but replied with four from Fernando Torres, Frank Lampard, Eden Hazard and a superb volley from Branislav Ivanovic.
West Bromwich Albion moved up to fourth place on 14 points with a 3-2 win over Queens Park Rangers, who remain winless and bottom.

Everton trailed twice at Wigan Athletic before saving a point in a 2-2 draw when Leighton Baines scored a penalty against his former club in the 87th minute.

The other game that could affect the top standings was at Upton Park where West Ham United were kicking off against Arsenal later in the day.

In Saturday’s other match, Reading appeared to be heading for their first league win of the season after going 2-0 up at Swansea City, but the home side fought back with two late goals to grab a 2-2 draw and avoid a fourth successive defeat.

At the home of the holders, City, with seven changes from the side that drew 1-1 with Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League on Wednesday, took an early lead with a blistering free-kick from Aleksandar Kolarov after five minutes.

Substitute Sergio Aguero doubled the lead after an hour, smashing home a Kolarov cross and James Milner completed the scoring with an inswinging free-kick after 89 minutes which he curled in with ferocious spin from the left of the penalty area.

David Silva also cracked a shot against the Sunderland bar as City dominated their visitors who had won one and drawn four of their matches prior to this defeat.
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini told the BBC: “I think in the first half, we missed two or three chances like other games but we had a good performance.

“I think also in London against Fulham we did very well and against Stoke. Every game is difficult in this moment. I am happy because we got a clean sheet, scored three but also because of our performance.”

Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill had no complaints about the outcome. “Man City deserved to win. When it was 1-0 we had a chance and just after the break we had an attacking threat, but overall they were much better and deserved to win the game.
“They were electric. They are fine players, champions of this country and playing big Champions League games. It was always the possibility if they got the second goal, they would cause havoc and that happened. You just have to take it.”

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