Sterling’s hat-trick extends City’s advantage

Manchester City extended their lead at the top of the Premier League table to 12 points as they ran out 4-0 winners against relegation-threatened Norwich City thanks to a Raheem Sterling hat-trick.

The Canaries went into Saturday’s 17:30 KO on the back of a three-match unbeaten run, but they were brought back down to earth inside 31 minutes when Sterling curled his shot into the corner from inside the penalty area.

Phil Foden added a second in the 48th minute, while Sterling grabbed a hat-trick before full-time at Carrow Road.

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City’s advantage at the top of the table could be reduced when Liverpool play Burnley on Sunday, but the Reds do have two games in hand over Pep Guardiola’s side.

In the opening game of the day, Manchester United were held to a 1-1 draw by Southampton at Old Trafford, as Ralf Rangnick’s side lost ground in the race for the top four.

Jadon Sancho opened the scoring for the Red Devils, but that was soon cancelled out by Che Adams.

At the wrong end of the table, Everton produced a dominant display to move to within one point of Leeds United. Frank Lampard’s side ran out 3-0 winners at Goodison Park thanks to goals from Seamus Coleman, Michael Keane and Anthony Gordon in what was a huge three points for the Toffees as they look to move away from the relegation zone.

Watford (10/3 to stay up) were unable to gain any ground on their relegation rivals, losing 2-0 to Brighton and Hove Albion at Vicarage Road.

Roy Hodgson says his side “will need a lot of mental strength” to avoid the drop this season, and they are now four points from safety after goals from Neal Maupay and Adam Webster.

Crystal Palace and Brentford (9/2 to be relegated) played out a goalless draw, with the Eagles still searching for their first Premier League win of 2022.

Chelsea were not in action in the league on Saturday, but they did win the Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi. The Blues lifted the competition for the first time after beating Brazilian club Palmeiras 2-1 in extra-time, with Kai Havertz scoring the decisive goal.

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