Arsenal punish 10-man City with 3-0 away win
Manchester: Arsenal overwhelmed 10-man Manchester City 3-0 in the Premier League on Sunday while Manchester United secured a 2-1 win at Stoke City with two goals from Wayne Rooney`s stand-in Javier Hernandez.
City were left chasing shadows from the fifth minute at Eastlands after defender Dedryck Boyata saw red for a last-man foul on Marouane Chamakh and Arsenal won with goals by Samir Nasri, Alex Song and Nicklas Bendtner.
Chelsea, who beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-0 on Saturday, lead the Premier League standings with 22 points.
Arsenal and City are both now on 17 points, alongside Manchester United after Hernandez struck four minutes from time to seal his side`s first away league win of the season.
In Sunday`s other match Liverpool claimed only their second win of the season when they beat Blackburn Rovers 2-1 at Anfield, with Fernando Torres among the scorers.
Arsenal had Cesc Fabregas back pulling the strings in a league game for the first time in five weeks and he made a huge difference with a display full of promptings and probings.
Arsenal had a scare in the first minute when Lukasz Fabianski saved well from David Silva`s clever flick but before five minutes were up the hosts were reduced to 10 men when Fabregas slid a perfect pass into the path of Chamakh and Boyata dived in needlessly to bring him down just outside the box.
Arsenal soon made their numbers pay when Nasri played a nice one-two with Andrei Arshavin before scoring from a tight angle in the 21st minute.
Fabregas`s nimble feet proved too much for Vincent Kompany five minutes before the break, earning a penalty for a trip, only for Joe Hart to make an excellent diving save from the Spaniard`s spot kick.
Fabianski was called into action to foil Silva again as City started the second half brightly but the fluttering flame was extinguished when another Fabregas pass caused chaos and allowed Song to poke in the killer second goal after 66 minutes.
Bendtner came off the bench for his second appearance of the season to complete the scoring two minutes from time.
"We played some outstanding football at times and it`s very difficult to stop a team playing at that tempo," Fabregas told Sky Sports.
"Even if they had 15 (players) and we had 11 we would still go and win."
After Rooney had hogged the headlines all week it was his stand-in Hernandez who was the toast of Manchester United fans after his double overcame battling Stoke.
He opened the scoring with a dextrous back-header after 27 minutes but as United eventually stat back to defend their lead they looked to be heading for another draw when substitute Tuncay Sanli curled in a lovely equaliser after 81 minutes.
Mexico striker Hernandez, however, topped an impressive all-round display by seizing on a loose ball to prod in the winner four minutes from time.
"Drawing so many away games hasn`t been good enough this season, so today there was a lot of relief at the end," said defender Gary Neville after his 600th United appearance.
Liverpool remain in the bottom three on nine points but there was a real feeling of relief around Anfield as they not only chalked up a rare win but played some enterprising soccer.
Sotirios Kyrgiakos put them ahead early in the second half with a header and after a Jamie Carragher own goal in the 52nd minute, Fernando Torres grabbed the winner a minute later with only his second goal of the season.