Sterling hat-trick boosts City's lead at top of table

Premier League confirms investigation of Manchester City

Premier League confirms investigation of Manchester City

And Sterling completed his hat-trick and secured the three points just before the hour mark when he crept in behind Daryl Janmaat to collect Bernardo Silva's exquisite through ball and slot past Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster.

The former Liverpool winger felt his 46th-minute opener changed the course of the game, following a first half in which City struggled to penetrate Watford's organised defence.

Just moments into the second period though came the controversial moment of the game when Sterling scored the opening goal.

'If I've chosen these players, it is because before the game I thought we needed fresh legs to compete today, to defend well, to run a lot.

Sterling completed his treble with a smart finish, but the way the England global opened the scoring brought with it the Premier League's latest offside controversy. Watford seemed content to get every player back behind the ball, setting themselves up to hit their opponents on the counter through the likes of Isaac Success and Andre Gray.

After that, we have the worldwide break and we come back and it will be "guys, one month and a half" and let's go.

Gracia's changes proved more impactful, though, as Troy Deeney and Deulofeu were introduced, the pair combining with their first touches for the latter to score 17 seconds after his introduction - the goal offering a tantalising glimpse of what a more expansive Watford might have been able to accomplish.

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The goal was initially ruled out by the assistant, but the referee opted to overule the decision after a lengthy discussion on the touchline.

"If we have made mistakes we will be punished". They have also made it to the quarterfinals in UEFA's Champions League, beating out Schalke 04 in the Round of 16.

Coach Pep Guardiola's men have now opened four points gap pending Liverpool's tie against Burnley at Anfireld on Sunday.

Hopefully next season, like in Europe, they can accept that we install VAR in this situation and it will be fair.

Fellow strugglers Brighton & Hove Albion also had reason to cheer as a dazzling individual goal from Anthony Knockaert sealed their 2-1 win at fierce rivals Crystal Palace.

Burley believes Liverpool are at a disadvantage as they play the day after Pep Guardiola's side hosts Watford (5.30pm).

City are still in the running for an unprecedented quadruple, having lost only once in 2019 - to Newcastle United in the Premier League - amid a run that included their EFL Cup final triumph over Chelsea on penalties. However, after a three minute delay, referee Paul Tierney overruled linesman Adrian Holmes and awarded the goal.

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