By Rhonda Richards | In Match Reports - Away Games
Manchester City earned their first away victory of the season as an impressive display saw off West Ham at Upton Park, a Sergio Aguero brace helping them to a 3-1 win.
Micah was a menace down the right flank as Manuel Pellegrini’s men moved up to fourth in the table, with Aguero and Alvaro Negredo forging an increasingly potent strikeforce.
Both had early opportunities to test West Ham’s resolve, whilst Mark Noble was leading the home side’s efforts at both ends of the field.
If City fans were nervous, those nerves were eased after 16 minutes. Fernandinho fed in to Negredo who dummied, enabling Aguero to collect the ball, coast into the box and slot home to make it 1-0.
The Argentina international went close not long after, with the West Ham defence once again standing off him only for the strike to float right down the throat of Jussi Jaaskelainen, before Micah’s header from David Silva’s corner flew over.
Aguero was causing all sorts of problem and once again he advanced through West Ham’s half and fired on goal, Jaaskelainen failing to gather but his defence clearing for him.
Former Manchester United youngster Ravel Morrison got a 25-yard shot away which sailed just wide, before Negredo muscled a yard of space only to drag his effort across the face of goal.
The hosts almost gifted a goal to City soon after as Winston Reid’s poor pass allowed Silva to pick out Yaya Toure, but the Ivorian’s strike was pushed clear by West Ham’s stopper.
Stats at half-time showed City had made 337 passes to West Ham’s 148, a clear illustration of the dominance in midfield of the visitors, though Sam Allardyce opted not to change tactics dramatically it seemed.
Their challenge was only going to get worse after 5 minutes of the second half, Silva clipping in a free-kick and Aguero – unmarked – rising to head home to make it 2-0. Very poor defence from the Hammers once again, and City were only too delighted to capitalize.
However, the home side did respond and hauled themselves back into the game soon after. A cross into the box was flicked on by Morrison, and Ricardo Vaz Te executed a fine overhead kick to make it 2-1.
If the west Ham fans hoped for a City collapse, Negredo almost grabbed an immediate third as he crashed a powerful shot against the underside of the crossbar having been set up by Aguero, whilst Reid was there to slide in and deny the Spaniard again seconds later.
Having gone close to grabbing his hat-trick only to be denied by Jaaskelainen, Aguero turned provided to put the game to bed with 10 minutes remaining. He picked out Silva who in turn swiveled and curled left-footed beyond West Ham’s keeper to make it 3-1.
There was to be no late revival from West Ham as City saw out the game, a tricky fixture navigated impressively by Pellegrini’s side.
West Ham: Jaaskelainen, Demel, Rat, Tomkins, Reid, Noble, Morrison, Diame, Vaz Te, Downing, Nolan
Man City: Hart, Richards, Garcia, Nastasic, Clichy, Nasri, Fernandinho, Toure, Silva, Aguero, Negredo.