Sergio Aguero scored his first Premier League goal in over a year to help Manchester City win 3-0 at Fulham and move 17 points clear at the top of the table.
Pep Guardiola's side were made to wait until the start of the second half before taking the lead through John Stones' close-range finish, before Gabriel Jesus soon took advantage of a mix-up at the back to double the visitors' lead.
Aguero - making just his second start for City since October and captaining his team - provided the icing on the cake when converting a penalty on the hour-mark, with the striker ending a run of 13 games without a goal stretching back to January 2020.
As a result, City now need just 14 points from their final eight matches to be sure of the title, while Scott Parker's team stay in the relegation zone on goal difference behind Brighton, who have two games in hand on the west Londoners.
Fulham: Areola (6), Tete (6), Andersen (6), Adarabioyo (6), Aina (6), Lemina (6), Reed (7), Anguissa (7), Loftus-Cheek (6), Cavaleiro (6), Lookman (7)
Subs: Mitrovic (6), Onomah (6), Robinson (6)
Man City: Ederson (7), Mendy (6), Dias (7), Stones (7), Laporte (7), Cancelo (8), Rodri (7), Silva (9), Torres (7), Jesus (7), Aguero (7)
Subs: Fernandinho (6), Garcia (6)
Man of the match: Bernardo Silva
How City edged nearer the title
City have made more Premier League changes than any side so far this season and Guardiola was at it again at Craven Cottage - making a whopping seven alterations to the side that beat Southampton so convincingly last time out - with one eye on Wednesday's Champions League last-16 second-leg tie at home to Borussia Monchengladbach.
One of those saw a recall for Aguero as the visitors opted for a 3-4-3 formation, although not surprisingly having missed so much football of late, the Argentine looked rusty and off the pace in a first half largely devoid of any meaningful action.
City tested Alphonse Areola on a couple of occasions through shots from Ferran Torres and Bernardo Silva, but the Fulham No 1 was more than up to it as the two teams went in level at the break.
However, one minute and 16 seconds into the second half and City were ahead as Joao Cancelo curled in a free-kick from the left-hand touchline, only to get it wrong and allow Stones a simple finish for his fourth goal in his last 10 appearances for the club.
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Just nine minutes later City doubled their lead, and again, Fulham were their own worst enemies as a mix-up between Ivan Cavaleiro and captain Joachim Andersen let in Jesus - who coolly rounded Areola for his 12th goal of the campaign.
Minutes later, Fulham's former City defender Tosin Adarabioyo got caught in possession attempting a flick, before the youngster made matters worse by barging Torres over in the box for a clear-cut penalty.
Fulham boss Scott Parker made two changes to the team that won 1-0 at Liverpool on Sunday, with Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Andre Frank Zambo Anguissa coming in for the benched Josh Maja and the injured Bobby Decordova-Reid.
Meanwhile, Man City boss Pep Guardiola made a whopping seven changes to the side that beat Southampton 5-2 on Wednesday, with captain Sergio Aguero starting in attack. Joao Cancelo, Benjamin Mendy, John Stones, Rodrigo, Ferran Torres and Gabriel Jesus were also all given starting berths, with Kyle Walker, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Kevin De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Ilkay Gundogan, Riyad Mahrez and Phil Foden making way.
Up stepped Aguero, 32, to beat Areola from the spot, despite the Frenchman diving the right way, as City netted their 99th goal of the campaign to register a club-equalling 16th away game in a row without defeat.
No stopping City on the road - Opta stats
- Manchester City have won each of their last eight away league games, scoring 22 goals while conceding only three in this run.
- Fulham have lost five of their last seven Premier League games at Craven Cottage (W1 D1), while they have also failed to score in seven of their last nine home league matches.
- Manchester City have won their last seven meetings with Fulham in all competitions by an aggregate score of 21-0. This is now their joint-longest ever run of wins against a single opponent without conceding a goal (also 7 v Wigan between 2010-2013).
- Manchester City have only lost one of their last 36 Premier League meetings with promoted clubs (W28 D7), a 2-3 defeat at Norwich in September 2019.
- This was Fulham's 20th Premier League defeat under Scott Parker, meaning the Cottagers have now lost 51% of their games under him in the competition (P39 W8 D11 L20).
- Gabriel Jesus has been directly involved in 95 goals in his 114 starts in all competitions for Manchester City (73 goals, 22 assists), scoring eight and assisting one more in his last 10 starts.
- In their 13 Premier League starts alongside one another for Manchester City, Sergio Agüero (15) and Gabriel Jesus (9) have scored a combined 24 goals. The Citizens have won 11 and lost none of those 13 league matches when the pair have both been in the starting XI (D2).
What the managers said...
Fulham boss Scott Parker: "I thought first half we took the game to Man City and played very well, were very solid out of possession.
"I asked the team to be very brave in terms of how we set it up and building from midfield and I thought we did it very well.
"It's fair to say there were some sloppy goals really in the second half. Something we've not been accustomed to seeing really.
"Set-play goal which was poor and two individual errors that Man City pounced on and the game was over at that point really so I think that's the residing factor from tonight's game.
"I asked the team to be brave, I asked the team to show courage because that's what you have to do when you're playing a top side like Man City and try and leave a mark or at least try and have some impact on the game and I thought we did that, but there's no denying that we made mistakes and the goals we conceded tonight were poor goals."
Man City boss Pep Guardiola: "In general, the game was really good in a tough, tough stadium, they came here and they won in Anfield last week and they always create chances.
"We controlled really well and we played in the first half really good and we cannot deny we scored the first goal in the first minute (of the second half) with John (Stones) and after much later, the second and the third and it was an important and brilliant victory.
"We knew it was important this week with three games in three different competitions, we started with one (win). But eight games left in the Premier League, now we focus on the Champions League."
Man of the Match - Bernardo Silva
Silva struggled at the start of the season, finding it hard to get into the City line-up, but boy has he returned to form since returning to the side in December.
And the diminutive forward was once again on song in west London to help City cruise to a 3-0 win, orchestrating all that was good from the visitors.
The Portugal international went close to opening the scoring in the first half, only to be denied by a smart near-post stop by Areola, and continued to be the standout performer after the break as the 26-year-old again reminded everyone of his importance to this team.
Fulham take on Leeds United at Craven Cottage on Friday at 8pm in a match you can see live on Sky Sports Premier League.
Meanwhile, City face Monchengladbach at the Etihad in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Wednesday (8pm), leading 2-0 from the first leg, before an FA Cup quarter-final at Everton on Saturday March 20 (5.30pm).