Mario Balotelli scored twice as Manchester City went five points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League after a memorable 6-1 win at Old Trafford.

The controversial Italian opened the scoring in the first half with a neat finish from a James Milner cross before Jonny Evans saw red for Manchester United shortly after the break.

Milner again turned provider for City as he found Balotelli with a pinpoint pass from the right flank, and the latter tapped home with ease.

The third was almost a carbon copy, but for personnel change, with Micah Richards finding Sergio Aguero to put the result beyond doubt.


Darren Fletcher did pull a goal back for the home side with a stunning effort from distance with 10 minutes remaining, but City had not finished.

Edin Dzeko - on as a substitute for Balotelli - grabbed a quickfire double and the fantastic David Silva netted in the closing stages to complete the rout and hand United their first league defeat at home in 18 months.

City are now in a strong position at the top of the table and have established themselves as the team to beat in pursuit of the title.

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