LONDON: Defending champions Manchester City and Arsenal registered big wins while Tottenham Hotspur defeated Crystal Palace 3-0 — all three clubs reaping rich rewards in a Premier League in a Boxing Day schedule disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Manchester City made it nine Premier League wins in succession to move six points clear at the top of the table after a remarkable 6-3 victory over Leicester.
In an extraordinary game at the Etihad, City were 4-0 up inside 25 minutes thanks to goals from Kevin De Bruyne, Ilkay Gundogan, Riyad Mahrez and Raheem Sterling. But Leicester came roaring back to hit three goals in the space of ten second-half minutes to turn the contest on its head. But Aymeric Laporte's emphatic header made it 5-3 for City before Sterling scored his second goal late in the game to seal victory for Pep Guardiola's side.
It was chaotic, breathless, and thoroughly entertaining — the highest-scoring Boxing Day fixture in the Premier League era.
Things turned out to be equally profitable for Arsenal as they won their fourth League match on the trot - five in all competitions — with a comprehensive 5-0 away victory against Norwich City.
In a match that Arsenal dominated for large parts, Bukayo Saka scored once in each half, sandwiched by a fine Kieran Tierney goal and an Alex Lacazette penalty. Emile Smith Rowe's injury-time strike ensured the Gunners moved to within three points of third-placed Chelsea. There was Boxing Day delight for Tottenham too they enjoyed a comfortable 3-0 win over Crystal Palace thanks to goals from Harry Kane, Lucas Moura, and Heun Min Son. IANS