Manchester City toppled Aston Villa, 3-1, on Sunday, sending the Birmingham side to their second-straight Premier League defeat.
Villa lose consecutive league matches for the first time since Unai Emery was appointed manager in November but remain in 11th place on 28 points.
City — embroiled in controversy after it was revealed last week that the club were in violation of over 100 financial rules in each season from 2009-10 to 2017-18 — came out of the gate flying and took a fourth-minute lead when Rodri scored off of an early corner.
Villa absorbed relentless pressure for most of the first half but conceded late — in the 39th minute and in stoppage time — and stood down a seemingly insurmountable 3-0 deficit at halftime.
Ollie Watkins cut the City lead to two goals in the 61st minute when he took a pass in stride from Douglas Luiz and beat Ederson low on the left side. The hosts clamped down from there, though, and rode out a 3-1 victory.
Man City 3-1 Aston Villa: a deeper look
City held a massive edge in expected goals, 3.91 to 0.52, and had 68% possession in the match.
Watkins scored his team-leading sixth league goal of the season and Douglas Luiz registered his fifth assist of the campaign.
Watkins said after the match: “All round, not pointing fingers, me especially, letting Rodri come through for the second goal, too easily in midfield.
“We switched off early doors with the set-piece and then we found it hard to get back into the game against a world-class team.”
Emery added that: “We were competing very well away from home and being consistent, defensively as well, but today the match was very different.
“They deserved to win, of course, but we made some mistakes that weren’t normal. We started well at the beginning with a good chance for Leon Bailey but then we conceded one goal from a corner.”
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