Manchester City moved into third place in the Premier League ahead of Arsenal and into that all important automatic place in next season’s Champions League after beating Stoke City 3-0.
These two same teams met in the FA Cup Final at the weekend, and this time City did not waste the early chances like they did at Wembley. Only 14 minutes into the game, Carlos Tévez jinked in between the Stoke back line before drilling the ball into the top left-hand corner.
City doubled their advantage eight minutes after the break as Joleon Lescott met Adam Johnson’s cross to head the ball beyond Thomas Sørensen. Roberto Mancini’s men continued to dominate proceedings and extended their lead midway through the second half, Tévez rounding things off with a stunning free-kick.
Man City now travel to Bolton on Sunday knowing that a win will guarantee their place in the group stage of the Champions League. The Man City win also heaps more pressure on Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger whose side has totally collapsed since losing in the Carling Cup final to Birmingham City. A month ago Arsenal were in the title race. Now it looks like they will finish fourth in the league. That is a stunning collapse by the Gunners.