Advantage City as Citizens edge Cottagers
Manchester, England – Manchester City went top of the Premier 0, on a snowy night at the Etihad.
The Citizens take a three-point lead in England's top tier as rivals Manchester United are set to face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
Roberto Mancini's men cruised to a comfortable victory at home behind goals from the deadly partnership of Sergio Aguero and Edin Dzeko. Fulham defender Chris Baird also conceded an own goal to help City claim all three points.
City took the lead 10 minutes into the match in slightly controversial fashion.
Adam Johnson claimed a dubious penalty kick after going down in the box from minimal contact. Aguero took advantage, powering home from the spot to put the Citizens in front.
City's lead was doubled 20 minutes later thanks to an own goal from Baird. The Northern Ireland defender appeared out of sorts throughout the first half, and the Citizens benefited from his uneasiness as they grabbed a two-goal lead.
Dzeko added a third goal following some brilliant individual play from Aguero. The Argentine danced into the box and squared the ball to an unmarked Dzeko, and the 25-year-old stuffed a one-time effort into the back of the net.
The second half was interrupted several times due to the unyielding winter storm, as Etihad Stadium stewards shoveled the field lines clear of snow on multiple occasions. The blizzard has also threatened to delay Sunday's clash at Stamford Bridge.
It could not slow down Manchester City though, as the Citizens improve to 57 points through 24 games to set the pace in the EPL.
Fulham, meanwhile, suffers its first loss in three Premier League games to remain on 27 points.
Arsenal 7, Blackburn 1
London, England - Arsenal trounced 10-man Blackburn in a 7-1 victory at the Emirates on Saturday, giving the Gunners their first Premier League win of the new year.
Robin van Persie continued his goal-scoring tear with a hat trick, netting in the second, 38th, and 61st minutes. The Dutchman leads the Premier League with 22 goals on the season.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also continued his impressive form with a brace, scoring in the 40th and 54th minutes.
Morten Gamst Pedersen notched an equalizer in the 32nd minute, but after quickly surrendering two more goals, Rovers were left with a mountain to climb as Gael Givet was issued a red card just before the break for a two-footed challenge.
Blackburn never recovered as Mikel Arteta and Thierry Henry tacked on second- half goals to complete the rout.
Swansea City 2, West Bromwich 1
West Bromwich, England - Swansea City surrendered the first goal at the Hawthorns but battled back in impressive fashion to claim a 2-1 win over West Bromwich on Saturday.
Marc-Antoine Fortune put the Baggies in front in the 54th minute, but Swansea quickly equalized through Gylfi Sigurdsson a minute later. Swansea did not have to wait long for the game-winner to materialize, as Danny Graham grabbed his eighth goal of the season in the 59th minute to hand the visitors all three points.
Swansea continues its stellar season in top-flight football, improving to 30 points on the season, while West Bromwich sits just above the relegation zone on 26 points.
Sunderland 1, Stoke City 0
Stoke-on-Trent, England - Sunderland continued its exceptional form under Martin O'Neill with a 1-0 win over 10-man Stoke City at the Britannia on Saturday.
The two sides entered the match tied on points, but the win sees Sunderland climb to eighth place on 33 points through 24 games.
Robert Huth was sent off for the Potters just before halftime, and the Black Cats capitalized on the man advantage in the second half as James McClean netted in the 60th minute to help his side claim their seventh win in 10 matches under the guidance of O'Neill.
Wolverhampton 2, QPR 1
London, England - Wolverhampton grabbed a much-needed win at Loftus Road on Saturday, edging 10-man QPR 2-1.
Newly-signed forward Bobby Zamora put the home side in front in the 16th minute, but his strike partner, Djibril Cisse, was issued a straight red card in the 34th minute to leave QPR up against it for the remaining hour.
Wolves utilized the extra man, as Matt Jarvis and Kevin Doyle provided second- half goals to see the visitors claim all three points.
Wolverhampton climbs out of the relegation zone and level with QPR as the two sides are deadlocked at 21 points.
Wigan 1, Everton 1
Wigan, England - Wigan and Everton traded second-half goals at the DW Stadium as the two sides played to a 1-1 draw Saturday.
The Latics went in front in the 76th minute after a goalkeeping gaffe from Tim Howard let in a Phil Neville own goal, but the Toffees responded seven minutes later as super-sub Victor Anichebe nodded home a cross from Leighton Baines to earn a share of the points.
Everton, on 30 points, is unbeaten in its last four Premier League games, while Wigan, bottom of the table on 16 points, put a halt to its four-game losing skid.
Norwich City 2, Bolton 0
Norwich, England - After picking up just one point from its last two matches, Norwich City got back to its winning ways with a 2-0 defeat of Bolton at Carrow Road on Saturday.
A scoreless opening period gave way to a two-goal showing from the Canaries in the second half, as goals from Andrew Surman in the 69th minute and Anthony Pilkington in the 85th minute saw the home side claim its eighth victory of the season.
Norwich looks a certain bet to stay in the Premier League following promotion last summer as it enjoys a comfortable ninth-place position on 32 points, while Bolton's struggles continue, sitting in the relegation zone on 20 points.