London : With a spirited 2-1 victory over Fulham on Super Sunday, Manchester City took back control of this exciting Premier League title race, passing Arsenal at the top. Julian Alvarez's incredible first-half goal was the difference.
In the lead-up to the match, Fulham manager Marco Silva had referred to Manchester City as "clearly the best team in the Premier League." Tim Ream's poor challenge gave Erling Haaland the opportunity to reach 50 goals for the season. The big story prior to the event was De Bruyne's absence. Guardiola stated that his midfield metronome did not "feel good," but he would not say when he anticipated the Belgian to return.
It did not stop City from getting off to a fast start. In the fourth minute, Haaland scored his 50th goal of the year, his 34th in the Premier League, as City took the lead thanks to an early penalty. After Ream had knocked down Julian Alvarez, the Norwegian striker blasted past Leno.
Andreas Pereira's flighted ball into the box was knocked down by Harry Wilson into the path of Carlos Vinicius Alves Morais, who sliced across the ball to finish beyond a rooted Ederson to level the scores in the 15th minute.
Alvarez, who started in place of the injured Kevin De Bruyne, restored City's lead before halftime with a spectacular shot in the 36th minute. Fulham started to gain control of the game.
City has moved to the top of the table, having won 24 out of their 32 matches, drawn four and lost four. They have a total of 76 points. Arsenal is one point short at the second, having won 23 of their 33 matches, drawn six and lost four. They have a total of 75 points.
In the other match, Manchester United defeated Aston Villa by 1-0.
The solitary goal of the match came from Bruno Fernandes came in the 39th minute. His shot came late in the first half, after Emiliano Martinez had blocked a shot from Marcus Rashford, the ball deflected over Martinez.
With this win, Manchester United is at the fourth place in the points table with 63 points, having won 19 of their 32 matches, drawn six and lost seven. Villa is in seventh place, having won 16 matches out of 34 matches, drawn six, lost 12. They have a total of 54 points.
In the third high-profile match of the day, Liverpool downed Tottenham Hotspur by 4-3 in a thriller at their home arena of the Anfield.
Liverpool got a massive advantage with three goals coming in the first half itself. Curtis Jones, Luis Diaz and Mo Salah were among the scorers in the third, fifth and 15th minute respectively, with Salah converting a penalty.
Harry Kane brought the scoreline to 3-1 before the end of the first half, in the 39th minute. Heung-Min Son (77th minute) and Richarlison (90+3) continued an admirable fightback for the Spurs, but Diogo Jota scored the winner in (90+4 minute) to secure a thriller at home.
Liverpool is in the fifth position in the points table with 56 points, they have won 16 out of 33 matches, drawn eight and lost nine. They have a total of 56 points.
Spurs are in the sixth spot, having won 16 out of their 34 matches, drawn six and lost 12. They have a total of 54 points.
Prior to playing Leicester on Monday, Fulham will travel to Anfield on Wednesday to take on Liverpool. On Wednesday, Man City will face West Ham. The team of Pep Guardiola have little time to rest before facing Leeds the following Saturday.
Thursday's match will be between Manchester United and top-four rivals Brighton. The following next will be against West Ham on Sunday. The next game for Aston Villa will be on Saturday versus Wolves.
Liverpool will resume action on Wednesday against Fulham before welcoming Brentford to Anfield on Saturday. Tottenham will host Crystal Palace at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday.