Manchester City 2-1 West Ham: Center-Backs save the day

Manchester City were faced with a stiff test in West Ham United, who firmly look set to stay in this season’s top four race. After the Hammers took a point off of City earlier this season, City were in for a real challenge at home, but just managed to win their English record-extending 20th straight match in all competitions.

It was not the usual suspects giving the Citizens the victory, however. Rúben Dias and John Stones, this season’s rock-solid backline, contributed in a different way: scoring both goals to keep City unbeaten in 27 straight matches.

This team since the start of December has truly shown the spirit of champions by finding a way to win difficult matches, even if the goals do not come from the usual sources.

West Ham look a truly stellar side that came to the Etihad and gave the runaway leaders arguably their most difficult match of the season. City are now 13 points clear of second place Man United with an extra game played, who face an in-form Chelsea team under Thomas Tuchel.

West Ham look set to be in the fight for the Champions League spots right to the end, but from a City perspective, its an excellent win over a side that took points off of them earlier this season. After starting the year in dismal form and at one point being on pace to finish with a points total in the mid-60’s, City have eclipsed the 90-point pace for the first time this season. They look the clear champions-elect at this point, but there is still work to be done and history to be made for this wonderful side.