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Liverpool 3 Manchester City 2

Liverpool boost title hopes with EPL victory over Manchester City

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Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers praised an "incredible" performance as his side took a huge stride towards the Premier League title with an enthralling 3-2 home win against Manchester City on Sunday.

Liverpool's 10th straight league victory carried them to 77 points and combined with second-placed Chelsea's 1-0 win away to 10-man Swansea, left Liverpool two points clear at the top with four games to play and seven in front of City.

Liverpool have four games to play and if they win them all will claim their first top-flight title in 24 years.

"That was a remarkable performance," Rodgers told Sky Sports. "I thought we were incredible today. I think the world watching that will see a team with so much spirit, so much quality."

Like they have done so many times this season, Liverpool started quickly and took the lead in the sixth minute with Raheem Sterling wrong-footing both Vincent Kompany and Joe Hart to fire home.


Martin Skrtel then nodded in his seventh goal of the season in the 26th minute to double their advantage.

City responded with two goals in five minutes from David Silva on 57 minutes and a Glen Johnson own goal to set up a thrilling finale.

As a fourth 2-2 draw in the last five games between the two sides looked the most likely result, Philippe Coutinho capitalised on a Kompany miskick to seal the win.

"We totally controlled the game. At halftime we were 2-0 up and it could have been more," Rodgers added.

"Congratulations to Man City because at 2-0 down we were incredible in the first half. You expect a 15-20 minute spell in which they get back into the game.

"They [Liverpool players] showed the character [we have] in this group ... to come back and get composure again and score a brilliant goal and get three very valuable points."

The club paid a fitting tribute on the weekend of the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy in which 96 Liverpool fans died at an FA Cup game against Nottingham Forest, and Rodgers admitted his side used it as motivation.

"There's always an emotive side especially around this time. Going into the game a lot was made about would it affect the players. We live with it every day.

"The families and victims of Hillsborough are with us every day. It was an inspiration for us rather than something that was going to hold us back."

The effects of the occasion and a draining game played at breakneck speed were plain to see. Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard had tears in his eyes at the final whistle and was visibly emotional in his post-match interview.

"I'm emotional but we need to keep calm," he said. "We still have four big games to come but that meant so much, especially when they got back into the game. You fear the worst at that point.

"That was the longest 90 minutes I have probably played in. It felt like the clock was going backwards during parts of that game.

"We want go all the way. Nothing's won yet but that was probably the biggest statement we've made so far."

At the Liberty Stadium, Swansea were a man down as early as the 16th minute after Chico Flores collected a second yellow card for bringing down Andre Schurrle.

But it wasn't until the 68th minute that Jose Mourinho's side made their advantage count, with Demba Ba's shot somehow evading Swansea keeper Michel Vorm.

It was Ba's second crucial goal of the week after he had scored in the Champions League quarter-final win over Paris Saint Germain.