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Result: Crystal Palace 0-2 Man City: Sergio Aguero nets for champions-elect

Result: Crystal Palace 0-2 Man City: Sergio Aguero nets for champions-elect
© Reuters
Pep Guardiola's side will clinch the title if Manchester United lose to Liverpool on Sunday.

Sergio Aguero provided a reminder of his goalscoring brilliance with the opener in Manchester City's 2-0 win at Crystal Palace to put the Premier League leaders on the verge of another title.

After a frustrating first 45 minutes in south London, it was City's record goalscorer who broke the deadlock with a superb finish and Ferran Torres wrapped up the points soon after following a fine curled effort.

Pep Guardiola's side clinched the Carabao Cup last weekend and took a big step towards the Champions League final on Wednesday, but still found the energy and quality to seal a 25th top-flight win of the campaign.

It means defeat for Manchester United on Sunday at home to Liverpool will crown City the best in England once again with stalwart Aguero making the most of a rare starting berth to edge his team towards more silverware.

Palace had lost the most recent meeting 4-0 back in January, but they showed their intent early on at Selhurst Park with two efforts from range.

Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Aguero were given opportunities from the off in the capital after they failed to make it off the bench in Wednesday's win in Paris and it was the England international who had City's first genuine chance of the contest.

Good defending by the recalled Tyrick Mitchell contributed towards the winger only firing wide to ensure his goal drought continued.

While Guardiola, who made eight changes, saw his team enjoy the majority of possession, the hosts looked a threat on the counter-attack and almost took the lead in the 28th minute.

Andros Townsend and Joel Ward combined well on the right after Palace had switched play well and the latter had a cross blocked which dropped to Christian Benteke, but he was denied by Ederson from close range.

The champions-elect had been warned and they nearly produced the perfect response when Jesus volleyed past Vicente Guaita eight minutes later from a Fernandinho cross. The offside flag had been raised though and a brief VAR check confirmed it was the right decision.

Aguero, who has struggled with fitness and form during the last 12 months, squandered a decent opening minutes later which meant it stayed goalless at the break with City failing to register a shot on target.

Scott Dann's timely intervention kept the score 0-0 after Torres had attempted to square for Jesus inside the six-yard box, but it was a brief reprieve for Roy Hodgson's side with the deadlock broken after 57 minutes.

It was a familiar source for City as Benjamin Mendy picked out Aguero in the area and he controlled before his strike was rifled into the roof of the net in trademark clinical fashion.

This was only the Argentinian's second goal in the Premier League this season, but like so often in the past it had moved the Manchester club a step closer to the title.

Winger Torres was another eager to impress and he made it 2-0 within two minutes of Aguero's effort to essentially wrap up the points.

A curled shot from outside the area through a crowd of bodies beat Guaita and sparked big celebrations from the City players on and off the pitch.

Sterling and Aymeric Laporte could have added further gloss, but the post and a heroic block from Benteke ensured the deficit stayed at two.

City will now have an eye on events at Old Trafford on Sunday where a Liverpool victory could clinch them a third league title in four years.

Guardiola's focus will most likely be on Paris St Germain's visit this coming Tuesday where they can take another step towards winning a treble.

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Olympic medal table header
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ChinaChina34241674
United StatesUnited States29352791
JapanJapan22101446
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Today's Olympic highlights header

Friday's key events


HOCKEY
· Great Britain's women aim to secure their place on the podium as they face India in the bronze medal match (2.30am)
· Netherlands - silver medallists five years ago - and Argentina battle for the gold medal in the women's final (11am)

BEACH VOLLEYBALL
· The women's gold medal will be decided as Australia and USA go head to head (3.30am)

BOXING
· Lauren Price will be looking to add to Team GB's success in the ring when she takes on Nouchka Fontijn of Netherlands in the women's middleweight semi-final (6am)

DIVING
· Tom Daley already has one Olympic gold to his name in Tokyo, and he begins his bid for second in the men's 10m platform. Teammate Noah Williams is also involved in the preliminary round (7am)

CYCLING
· Jason Kenny's reign as sprint king may be over, but Jack Carlin looked strong in his bid to succeed his compatriot. He takes on Harrie Lavreysen in his sprint semi-final (8.10am), with the final taking place later in the day (10.35am)
· The women's madison makes its Olympic debut at the velodrome as Team GB duo Katie Archibald and Laura Kenny look to add another medal to their collections (9.15am)

FOOTBALL
· Hosts Japan will look to get themselves on the podium as they face Mexico in the men's bronze medal match (10am)
· The women's champions will be crowned as both Sweden and Canada aim to win Olympic gold for the very first time (1pm)

ATHLETICS
· The men's 5000m final includes Great Britain's Andrew Butchart, but most eyes will be on Ugandan world record holder Joshua Cheptegei (1pm)
· Team GB's Jodie Williams will hope to get on the podium in the women's 400m final, but defending champ Shaunae Miller-Uibo is favourite for gold while Stephenie Ann McPherson should challenge and Allyson Felix is bidding to become the most decorated female track and field athlete of all time (1.35pm)
· Netherlands' Sifan Hassan takes on leg two of her ambitious attempt at a Tokyo treble in a women's 1500m final which also includes Great Britain's Laura Muir and Faith Kipyegon of Kenya (1.50pm)
· A star-studded women's 4x100m relay final will see a Team GB quartet including Dina Asher-Smith look to upset defending champions USA and favourites Jamaica, who boast Elaine Thompson-Herah as she goes for her third gold of the Games (2.30pm)
· Great Britain and Jamaica will also be going for gold in the men's 4x100m relay final, and their medal hopes have been boosted by USA's failure to qualify (2.50pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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