Football: Five-goal Aguero fires City top, Chelsea crisis deepens

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Manchester City’s striker Sergio Aguero (right) reacts after
scoring their first goal during the EPL match between
Manchester City and Newcastle United at The Etihad Stadium
in Manchester, England, Oct 3, 2015. (Photo: AFP/Oli Scarff)
LONDON: Sergio Aguero plundered five goals in a dizzying
20-minute spell as Manchester City demolished Newcastle
United 6-1 on Saturday (Oct 3) to reclaim first place in the
Premier League. But Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was
left to admit that he could be sacked after a 3-1 home defeat
against Southampton left the champions 10 points off the
pace in 16th place.
City had lost their previous two league games and went
behind in the 18th minute when Aleksandar Mitrovic headed
home, but Aguero equalised in the 42nd minute before
hitting the net again four more times. Kevin De Bruyne also
scored, as well as teeing up two of Aguero’s goals, as Manuel
Pellegrini’s side provisionally moved two points clear of
Manchester United, who visit Arsenal on Sunday.
“Sergio Aguero is different,” said Pellegrini. “In other games
he was maybe having a lot of chances, but not scoring.
Today he returned to his normal amount of chances he
creates, but this time he scored.”
Aguero, 27, became the fifth player to score five goals in an
English top-flight game since the launch of the Premier
League in 1992 after Andrew Cole, Alan Shearer, Jermain
Defoe and Dimitar Berbatov. But Pellegrini’s decision to
withdraw him in the 64th minute denied the Argentina
international a chance to set a new record, with the City
manager revealing that Aguero had required treatment on
his hamstring at half-time.
Mitrovic had opened his Newcastle account with a header
from Georginio Wijnaldum’s cross, but from there on it was
all about Aguero at the Etihad Stadium. He nodded in an
equaliser, put City in front early in the second half with a
deflected effort and dinked a shot over Tim Krul to complete
his hat-trick, before De Bruyne looped a volley home from
Jesus Navas’ cross.
Aguero’s fourth goal, on the hour, saw him curl a shot into
the bottom-right corner from the edge of the box and two
minutes later he had a fifth after tapping in De Bruyne’s low
“Very happy about the five goals and the victory,” Aguero
wrote on Twitter. “Thank you all for the encouragement and
support. C’mon, City!”
Seeking to bounce back from their 2-1 Champions League
loss at Porto, Chelsea recalled captain John Terry and took a
10th-minute lead when Willian planted a free-kick in the top-
right corner from wide on the left. But Steven Davis rattled
home a 43rd-minute equaliser from Graziano Pelle’s
chested lay-off before an unsuccessful interception by Terry
allowed Sadio Mane to run through and put Southampton
ahead on the hour. After Radamel Falcao had been booked
for a dive in the Southampton box, Pelle added a merited
third in the 72nd minute, gathering a pass from Mane and
arrowing a shot into the bottom-left corner.
It was the first time Mourinho had seen an away team score
more than twice at Stamford Bridge in the league and it
sealed Chelsea’s fourth defeat of the campaign – their worst
start to a season in 37 years.
“If the club wants to sack me, they have to sack me, because
I am not running away,” Mourinho told Sky Sports. “It is a
crucial moment in the history of this club because if they
sack me, they sack the best manager this club has ever had.”
Earlier, Crystal Palace climbed to third place by beating West
Bromwich Albion 2-0, with Yohan Cabaye teeing up Yannick
Bolasie for the 68th-minute opener and then netting a late
Leicester City returned to the top four after winning 2-1 at
Norwich City courtesy of goals from Jamie Vardy, who
claimed his seventh goal of the campaign from the spot, and
Jeff Schlupp.
West Ham United slipped to fifth place following a 2-2 draw
at second-bottom Sunderland, whose manager, D!ck
Advocaat, is reported to be on the brink of leaving the club.
Steven Fletcher and Jeremain Lens, who scored a classy
chip, put Sunderland 2-0 up, but Lens was then sent off for
two bookable offences and goals from Carl Jenkinson and
Dimitri Payet earned West Ham a point.
Pressed on his position after the game, Advocaat said: “I
don’t want to give an answer. Today I am the manager. What
will happen in the next weeks, months, I cannot say.”
Full debutant Glenn Murray scored but then saw a late
penalty saved as Bournemouth were held to a 1-1 draw by
fellow promoted side Watford, for whom Odion Ighalo
netted for the fifth time this term.
Meanwhile, Marko Arnautovic earned Stoke City a 1-0 win at
Aston Villa.
– AFP/fl

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