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2021-22 English Premier League
  • Kevin De Bruyne (70')

Kevin De Bruyne stunner gives Man City win vs. Chelsea, opens 13-point gap

A stunning strike from midfielder Kevin De Bruyne helped Manchester City to a 1-0 win over Chelsea on Saturday as Pep Guardiola's side increased their gap at the top of the Premier League table to 13 points.

City dominated for much of the clash at the Etihad Stadium before breaking the deadlock on 70 minutes through a superb curled effort from De Bruyne on the edge of Chelsea's 18-yard-box.

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Saturday's result means City, who have 56 points after 22 games in the Premier League, have now won their last 12 league matches, extending their lead over second-place Chelsea.

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel said his side would keep up the chase, but struck a realistic tone in regard to the title chase

"We won't give up, but if City keep on winning every game, nobody can catch them," Tuchel said.

The two sides could not be separated in a quiet first half, but City midfielder Jack Grealish enjoyed a golden opportunity minutes before the break when Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic lost the ball on the edge of his own box. The ball quickly found Grealish, but he missed the ensuing one-on-one with Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Chelsea managed to put rare pressure on City's goal after the restart as striker Romelu Lukaku was sent through on goal following a threaded ball from Kovacic, but the Belgian striker could not find a way past opposing goalkeeper Ederson.

Chelsea forward Christian Pulisic was substituted for Timo Werner on 69 minutes after a quiet performance as Tuchel looked for a winner.

However, De Bruyne proved to be the difference, receiving the ball in space from defender Joao Cancelo before curling a strike into the far-bottom corner.

"It was absolutely well deserved," Guardiola said. "We cannot expect ten, 12 chances against that team. They're European champions."

"They waited in the transition to punish us and we scored the goal in a transition. We knew exactly what team we were playing and how good they are. In general today, we were so patient," he added.

City have now recorded 13 clean sheets in the Premier League this season, three more than the second-best Liverpool (10).

Information from Reuters contributed to this report.

English Premier League Standings

POS Team GP GD PTS
1 Manchester City 37 +72 90
2 Liverpool 37 +66 89
3 Chelsea 37 +42 71
4 Tottenham Hotspur 37 +24 68
5 Arsenal 37 +9 66
6 Manchester United 37 +1 58
7 West Ham United 37 +11 56
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 37 -3 51
9 Leicester City 37 0 49
10 Brighton & Hove Albion 37 -4 48
11 Brentford 37 -7 46
12 Newcastle United 37 -19 46
13 Crystal Palace 37 +3 45
14 Aston Villa 37 -1 45
15 Southampton 37 -21 40
16 Everton 37 -19 39
17 Burnley 37 -18 35
18 Leeds United 37 -38 35
19 Watford 37 -42 23
20 Norwich City 37 -56 22