Edin Dzeko netted the only goal of the game as Manchester City eased past Crystal Palace with a 1-0 win to move to the top of the Premier League.
Many predicted that the Sky Blues – the division’s highest scorers – would enjoy a routine victory against the lowly Eagles, but Manuel Pellegrini’s men were made to work hard for the three points.
The first half was very much one-way traffic, with the home side creating most of the chances and enjoying superior possession, which almost saw David Silva open the scoring.
However, the second period started in very different fashion, with the travellers enjoying a flurry of chances.
Jason Puncheon saw an effort tipped past the post by Joe Hart, before Marouane Chamakh sent a header wide of the goal after finding himself unmarked from the resulting corner.
But, City made the visitors pay for their spurned opportunities on 66 minutes. Edin Dzeko – back in the starting XI in place of Alvaro Negredo – latched onto a neat cut back from Jesus Navas to fire high into Julian Speroni’s net to break the Londoners’ spirited resistance.
However, the Bosnian’s effort didn’t kill Palace’s spirit, as both Joel Ward and Barry Bannan attempt to peg back their illustrious opponents immediately, but were unable to beat Hart.
City managed to then ride out some pressure, and could have doubled their lead through Dzeko.
The three points moves the Sky Blues to the top of the table and ahead of Arsenal, who play tomorrow, while Crystal Palace remain above the relegation zone on goal difference.