Manchester City tame West Ham and snowstorm to return to second in Premier League

Champions claim 2-1 win at Etihad after goals from Gundogan and Fernandinho to move above Liverpool

Manchester City returned to second in the Premier League table with a 2-1 win over West Ham United on a day that saw heavy snowfall cause significant disruption.

Sunday's match between Burnley and Tottenham Hotspur was called off an hour before kick-off at Turf Moor due to the icy weather, and thick snow fell for much of the first half at the Etihad Stadium.

The snow may have contributed to the game's lack of rhythm in the first half, but it could not prevent City from taking the lead in the 33rd minute when Riyad Mahrez drove the ball across the goal and Ilkay Gundogan was on hand to steer it home.

That marked the beginning of a spell of heavy pressure from the hosts and they could have gone 2-0 up four minutes later but Gabriel Jesus's shot was cleared off the line by Ben Johnson.

Half-time saw the snowstorm abate as an army of groundstaff made their way on to the pitch to clear the snow. “We have an incredible groundskeeper,” City manager Pep Guardiola said. “Thanks to them we could play.”

West Ham then had another let-off when Aaron Cresswell made a goal-line clearance as City dominated.

However, it took the home side until the 90th minute to score again as Jesus teed up fellow Brazilian Fernandinho to net three minutes after he came off the bench.

Having seen little to warm them up during the game, the West Ham fans finally had something to celebrate when Manuel Lanzini won the ball on the edge of the area and sent an unstoppable shot into the top right corner with the final kick of the game.

The victory was City's third in a row and moves them above Liverpool by one point, while West Ham remain fourth despite a second successive defeat.

“The chances we created, it could have been three or four,” said Guardiola, who was missing several key players including Kevin De Bruyne, Jack Grealish, and Phil Foden. “The players we have out … those that came here were brilliant. All of them. We cannot forget which opponent we played. They have everything.”

As heavy snow fell in the north of England, there was sunshine in London for Brentford's narrow victory over Everton.

After a bright start under Rafa Benitez, Everton have lost five and drawn two of their past seven games, with Ivan Toney's first-half penalty proving the difference at the Brentford Community Stadium.

Next up for Everton is the Merseyside derby against high-flying rivals Liverpool on Wednesday and Benitez has called on his team to bounce back.

“Every game is important for us. Obviously the next one is more important because it is the derby. We must learn from the mistakes we are making,” he said.

“When you lose games it is not easy. It is football, sometimes like today you have chances and you push but it is not enough. The only thing is to keep attacking and try not to make these mistakes in defence.”

In Sunday's other game, Leicester City ran out 4-2 winners over Watford at the King Power Stadium. Jamie Vardy scored twice for the hosts, with James Maddison and Ademola Lookman also on target. Joshua King, from the penalty spot, and Emmanuel Dennis scored for Watford.

Updated: November 28th 2021, 5:09 PM