With their tense 1-nil victory over big-brother Manchester United last Monday, Manchester City is all grown up. The win propelled City to the top of the premiership table with just two games left in the season. Was City in the driver's seat? Do young girls overly use the word "like?" The rub for Man City was a tough road encounter against Newcastle United. The magpies were coming off a well-deserved 2-0 win at Chelsea in mid-week which featured two of the prettiest strikes this side of a bowling lane.
Let's kick-start this thing.
NEWCASTLE UNITED-MANCHESTER CITY........City faced a stiffer test than final exams at MIT. Roberto Mancini's crew struggled with the questions put forth by the home team but after the ten-minute mark they were able to figure out the Newcastle puzzle. However all of the sky blues possession netted a giant goose egg on the scoreboard. At 62 minutes Mancini brought on Nigel DeJong which allowed YaYa Toure to push forward. Toure is the blues maestro; its' conductor; the leader of the band. The Ivory Coast international put the team in rhythm. He broke the deadlock with a low slider in the 70th and provided frosting on the cake in the 89th. If Sergio Aguero had been a more accurate marksman, this game would've been over by the 70th minute. The result speaks for itself. Polish off the silverware, Man City is about to take their place at the head of the table. Man City-2 Newcastle-nil.
MANCHESTER UNITED-SWANSEA CITY.....The red devils had to be in a sour mood after Man City's win, and they were able to take out their anger on an overmatched Swansea side. Paul Scholes did his best Alex Ovechkin impersonation with a re-direction of an Ashley Young shot in the 28th. Thirteen minutes later Young doubled his team's pleasure with a right-footed shot into the lower corner pocket. The visitors would huff and puff in the second stanza but came away with nothing. Man United-2 Swansea-0.
ARSENAL-NORWICH CITY.....Defense wasn't an afterthought, before-thought, or really any thought as both sides were in full-attack mode. Yossi Benayoun got the party started with a right-footed laser just two minutes into the game. Norwich surprised their hosts with their offensive flair and were rewarded with goals from Wes Hoolahan and Grant Holt. After intermission the gunners got their marching orders and who else would lead the charge but Robin Van Persie. The dunking Dutchman of the pitch would score twice from his sweet spot; 8 yards in front of goal. Armed with a 3-2 advantage Arsenal fell-asleep at the back and watched Steve Morrison enter through an open window to steal a point. At games' end Arsene Wenger, as is his custom, offered only a limp and clammy fish-like handshake. Perhaps he was perturbed over his valuable fullback Bacary Sagna, who suffered a broken fibula in the match. A 3-3 score was a fair result. Arsenal-3 Norwich-3.
ASTON VILLA-TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR.......AV is one of the most offensively-challenged clubs in the premiership but was on luck's good side in the 35th through Brad Clark. His seemingly routine shot from the top of the box was deflected past a stunned Brad Friedel. Spurs midfielder Danny Rose saw red five minutes into the second half for a harsh tackle. While Spurs was down, they weren't counted out. Emmanuel Adebayor converted a well-deserved Penalty Kick from the dot to salvage one point and keep their Champions league hopes alive. Aston Villa-1 Tottenham-1.
FULHAM-SUNDERLAND....Americans are generally looked down upon in London but Clint Dempsey is treated as one of their own. The Texan was tall in the saddle after delivering a free kick to open the scoring in the 12th minute. Phillip Bardsley would supply the knot in the 34th but before the ink would turn dry on the score sheet Mousa Dembele restored Fulham's lead one minute later. No team has done more with less this season than Fulham. Fulham-2 Sunderland-1.
WOLVERHAMPTON-EVERTON.....A nursing home provided more scoring than was found in this lackluster contest. Everton enjoyed the better of play but a tie was a fair result. Wolves-nil Everon-nil.
BOLTON-WEST BROMWICH ALBION.....Bolton could've taken a giant leap out of the premiership danger zone, but instead only took a small step. They had a 2-nothing lead on home soil with just 15 minutes left but somehow allowed WBA a life-line. Goals from Chris Brunt and James Morrison in the 75th and 90th was pure thievery for WBA. If a tie can ever be described as devastating, than this one fit the bill. Bolton-2 WBA-2.
QUEENS PARK RANGERS-STOKE......With a season-ending trip against a Manchester City squad that has its' champagne on ice, QPR was in a must-win situation. Talk about drama, a scoreless draw was a likely result until Djibril Cisse tapped home a rebound from the doorstep. QPR's fans partied like it was 1999 at games' end and for good reason. There's a better chance of Mitt Romney and Barack Obama sharing a vacation house than QPR has of winning next week at Manchester City. QPR-1 Stoke-nil.
Penalty Kick...Congratulations to Chelsea for winning the prestigious FA Cup on Saturday. They'll celebrate the summer by taking on Paris Saint-Germain at Yankee Stadium on July 22. Hit me back with your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.