Manchester City's big win over Crystal Palace could prove important, with that 5-0 victory ensuring they now have the best goal difference of the teams in the hunt for the Champions League.
Pep Guardiola claims Manchester City are the Premier League's best team from box to box, but insists they must sharpen up at either end of the pitch next season. "Nicolas Otamendi and Vincent Kompany are strong in the air and win duels but we don't have enough guys to score goals".
Palace got results against the big clubs recently, and with three defeats on the bounce, it leaves them looking over their shoulder at other results. "It's all in our hands and it's a good feeling".
More chances followed and third goal City had been threatening arrived shortly before the hour mark when the influential De Bruyne steered a shot under Hennessey and just inside the post after Sterling had held off Schlupp to reach Silva's header and set up the chance.
Kompany scored at the Etihad Stadium for the first time since August 2015 when he slammed Kevin De Bruyne's low cutback into the top corner to spark a second-half rout of Sam Allardyce's side. When we spoke at the beginning of the season, we said the first step was "don't put pressure on him, be able to train regularly and play one game".
Guardiola had suggested it would be hard for David Silva to play after only just returning to training from a knee injury week. "He knows which pass to pick".
"Maybe I remember one game this season where the opponent create more chances".
His Barcelona side finished runners-up to Real Madrid in La Liga in 2012, but he won the title in his other three seasons there - while his Bayern Munich team were Bundesliga champions in each of the three years he was in charge. Of course I'm happy. I just hope he can do it for us for a few more years.
Palace could not reflect with the same optimism.
De Bruyne's cutback for Kompany and his cushioned header for Sterling took the Belgian to 16 Premier League assists for the season - the highest in any of Europe's top five leagues, overtaking Emil Forsberg of RB Leipzig.
With a four-point cushion, the odds remain in their favour but next week's clash with 18th-placed Hull could be a tense affair.
It has been his team's finishing that had let him down so far, Guardiola said. If you do things right you can get opportunities to score, as long as you frustrate them.
Kompany, who made a fifth successive start after his injury problems, has no doubt there is more to come from his team, with some players yet to realise their full potential. "If they get that positive thinking going right from the start of the week, inevitably it will help them with what could be a nervy state of affairs next Sunday".
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