EPL 2017/18 Manchester City 5-0 Crystal Palace: 5 talking points
After thrashing Watford 6-0 last week, Pep Guardiola was looking to sustain City’s momentum by hoping to dismantle a dire Crystal Palace team. Crystal Palace are the first team in history to lose their first 5 league games without scoring a single goal. Roy Hodgson’s men were in desperate need of a change of fortune and a match against Manchester City provided that opportunity.
After a tight first half, Leroy Sane broke the deadlock in the 44th minute after a wondrous piece of skill to lob Scott Dann and poke past Wayne Hennessey. Manchester City doubled their lead shortly after the break as Sane squared the ball across for Raheem Sterling to slot in. Sterling scored his 2nd ten minutes later, giving his team a 3-0 lead.
In the 78th minute, Sergio Agüero scored and edged closer to history by becoming only 1 goal behind Manchester City’s all-time leading goalscorer. Fabian Delph put the icing on the cake with a sweet long-range strike in the 88th minute.
The 4-0 win leaves Manchester City at the top of the table, level with Manchester United but clear in terms of goal difference. For Crystal Palace, the defeat leaves them rooted to the bottom of the table with no goal or win in six league games.
Here are the main talking points of the game.
#5 Jeffrey Schlupp: the weak link
Roy Hodgson lined Crystal Palace up in a rigid 4-2-3-1, looking to sure up the midfield and counter down the flanks. That plan could have been perfect if he had the right personnel for the job. He had the perfect target man up front in Christian Benteke, a player who would hold up play and be on the end of crosses.
He had Andros Townsend on the right, a man looking to stretch the City defence at all times and then they had Jeffrey Schlupp. The left-back turned winger was meant to be a pacey outlet who could both defend and attack down that flank, but in the end, he did neither, causing Palace to play with 10 men.