3/12/23, 8:09 AM
Manchester City earned three valuable points in their bid to reclaim the Premier League (PL) title, defeating Crystal Palace 1-0 to keep the pressure on league leaders Arsenal.
With City playing ahead of title rivals Arsenal, the pressure was on them to take the game to Palace and close the gap at the top of the table. City's foot was firmly on the ground in search of that, and they should have taken the lead midway through the first half when Nathan Ake laid the ball off for the effervescent Erling Haaland, but his effort from six yards drifted agonizingly over the bar.
Rodri was next in line to try his luck for City, but his strike was straight down the throat of Vicente Guaita in the first half. Regardless, City fans may not have been overly concerned given that their last nine goals against Palace had come after the break.
Soon after the break, Phil Foden came close to adding to his tally, but Guaita was proving an immovable object in the Palace goal, and was on hand to beat away Foden's free-kick.
It's just as well for Palace that Guaita was on fire, as the 60th minute marked the hosts' fourth hour of Premier League play without a shot on target, a worrying trend for a team that desperately needs a win to allay any lingering relegation fears.
Their need for a goal became even more pressing when Michael Olise was felled in the area, and who else but Haaland was going to step up when City needed him the most to put them ahead?
City's win could have been more impressive if Haaland hadn't headed over from a few yards out, but with Palace's goal-shy nature, they didn't have to worry as they cruised to extend their unbeaten league run to six games. Palace, meanwhile, finished the night just four points above the drop zone and will undoubtedly be looking over their shoulder, wondering where their next victory will come from.