Manchester City returned to winning ways with a 5-2 victory over Southampton to move 14 points clear at the top of the Premier League.
After their long winning run was ended with defeat at the hands of Manchester United last weekend, City looked to be suffering from a hangover as Southampton dominated the early exchanges.
City came to life on 15 minutes when Kevin De Bruyne was on hand to cap a fine passing move with the opening goal.
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Saints got a deserved equaliser when James Ward-Prowse slotted home from the penalty spot after Aymeric Laporte had hauled down Jannik Vestergaard in the box.
There was controversy mid-way through the first half as Phil Foden stayed on his feet when attempting to skip past Alex McCarthy and he was not given a penalty despite the Saints goalkeeper clearly impeding the City youngster.
The Foden incident did not prove to be telling, as Riyad Mahrez pounced on a mis-placed pass from Che Adams to curl home from 18 yards, and on the stroke of half-time Ilkay Gundogan was on hand to stab the ball home after a shot from Mahrez had hit a post.
Mahrez got his second of the match with a curling finish on 55 minutes, but City were punished for some awful defending as Adams cut the gap within 60 seconds.
The Southampton revival was short lived as De Bruyne collected a cushioned pass from Foden before slotting into the bottom corner to nip in the bud any talk of City faltering with the winning line in sight.

TALKING POINT - HONESTY IS CLEARLY NOT THE BEST POLICY

"He was too honest, he should have gone down, blah, blah." It should not matter that Phil Foden was too honest, VAR should have awarded him a penalty.
The England youngster was quick to sense a chance and raced onto the ball after Saints goalkeeper McCarthy had let it run under his foot.
McCarthy attempted to atone with a sliding tackle but Foden was much too quick. Had Foden gone down, a penalty would have been given. He did not, as his instinct was to try and score. But in hurdling the challenge of the 'keeper, he lost balance and could only force a corner.
Referee Jon Moss let play go, which was fine as VAR is there to help out. But the man in the truck decided to stick with Moss' initial decision.
So the next time a player goes down under minimal contact and there are complaints, we can point back to an instance of an honest player not being rewarded for that honesty.

MAN OF THE MATCH - RIYAD MAHREZ

Phil Foden was within a whisker of this after a couple of assists in a dynamic display, but when City were looking a little off colour, Mahrez provided that bit of stardust. Two superb finishes and an assist showed exactly why Guardiola has selected him so often this season.

PLAYER RATINGS:

Man City: Ederson 6, Walker 6, Dias 5, Laporte 5, Zinchenko 7, Fernandinho 7, Gundogan 6, Mahrez 8*, De Bruyne 7, Bernardo 6, Foden 8. Subs: Torres 6, Aguero 6, Mendy N/A
Southampton: McCarthy 5, Bednarek 6, Salisu 5, Vestergaard 7, Bertrand 7, Stephens 6, Ward-Prowse 7, Armstrong 6, Djenepo 6, Redmond 6, Adams 7. SUBS: Tella 6, Diallo 6, Watts 6.

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MATCH HIGHLIGHTS:

15' - GOAL! From nowhere City spring to life. A superb clipped pass from Ruben Dias who finds the marauding Zinchenko. He crosses to Phil Foden whose shot is saved by Alex McCarthy and Kevin De Bruyne is on hand to follow up and score.
25' - GOAL! Ward-Prowse's corner caused the panic that created the penalty and he fires the ball down the middle to level the scores.
31' - DRAMA! McCarthy with a blunder, he lets the ball run under his boot and looks like he catches Foden when attempting to atone. Moss lets the play carry on and City only force a corner. VAR takes a look and deems it not to be a foul. I am going to Specsavers tomorrow.
33' - CHANCE! Ward-Prowse lets fly from 30 yards, and it swerves and dips and forces an excellent save from Ederson.
40' - GOAL! Mahrez with a sizzling effort. He collects a misplaced pass from Che Adams, he cuts inside onto his left foot and curls the ball beyond McCarthy into the bottom corner from 18 yards. A great goal, but it was self inflicted on Saints by Adams.
45+3' - GOAL! Marhez collects the ball on the right, exchanges passes with De Bruyne and fires a shot against the far post and Gundogan is on hand to net the rebound. A killer blow for Saints.
49' - CHANCE! Brilliant play from Foden who dances into the box and forces a corner. He really is a huge talent and a delight to watch. From the corner, Foden takes aim from 20 yards and stings the palms of McCarthy.
55' - GOAL! Mahrez again. After being under pressure seconds earlier, City power forward. Mahrez collects the ball inside the box, he takes a couple of touches and whips in a wonderful shot.
57' - GOAL! Saints hit back. Awful play from City at the back as they fail to clear their lines and the ball falls to Adams in the box and he lashes home. The look on Pep's face is a picture, but he was the man who made changes at the back.
59' GOAL! De Bruyne with the dancing feet to collect a cushioned pass from Foden before curling a low shot beyond McCarthy and into the corner. That Saints revival was short lived.

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