After routing relegation-threatened Everton at Goodison Park, Manchester City needs two victories to reclaim the Premier League title.
With six points from their remaining games against Chelsea, Brighton, and Brentford, Pep Guardiola’s side will be certain of their third consecutive title.
But the Toffees paid dearly for Mason Holgate’s stunning error when unmarked at the far post, the defender hooking over from a few of yards.
City had been second best until that time, but showed how clinical they are in front of goal by moving to the other end and scoring twice in two minutes.
Ilkay Gundogan was the hero of the show, contributing to all three City goals with a brilliant flicked finish before setting up Erling Haaland’s close range header.
The midfielder curled in a stunning free-kick from the edge of the box in the second half as City surged four points clear at the top, though Arsenal may close the gap with a win over Brighton later on Sunday.
Everton will be looking uneasily over their shoulders with two games remaining, as they are only one point above the relegation zone.
Everton vs. Manchester City Reaction
Unstoppable The city keeps the triple charge.
Cross-town rivals Manchester United is the only English side to have won the Premier League, Champions League, and FA Cup all in the same season, in 1999.
The following few days will reveal how close City can come to replicating that achievement.
After cruising to an easy victory over Everton, Liverpool is on the verge of winning their fifth trophy in the last six years, but United will be looking to prevent them from duplicating their remarkable feat in next month’s FA Cup final at Wembley.
City’s ultimate goal is to win Europe’s best club championship, and they will meet holders Real Madrid again on Wednesday, with the semi-final tied at 1-1 following the first leg.
Pep Guardiola’s team is also in good form, having won 12 straight league games and going 22 games unbeaten in all competitions.
On his 300th appearance for the club, Gundogan controlled a pass from Riyad Mahrez and hooked in a brilliant finish with his back to goal, as well as converting a stunning free-kick.
In the interim, striker Haaland had only touched the ball twice before heading in his 52nd goal of an incredible season, as he chases Everton great Dixie Dean’s record of 63 in a single campaign.
A magnificent scissor kick went wrong in the second half, but the damage had already been done, and the Norwegian may still beat Dean’s record, which has stood for 96 years.
Concerns about Calvert-Lewin?
Everton’s spectacular 5-1 victory over Brighton on Monday lifted Sean Dyche’s team out of the relegation zone and raised hopes for another season in the Premier League.
However, if 19th-placed Leicester manages to upset top-four-chasing Liverpool on Monday evening, they may slip back.
The Toffees fans face a tense finish to another disappointing season, with games remaining against Wolves at Molineux next Saturday and Bournemouth at Goodison Park.
Everton’s loss against City is their 10th Premier League loss at home, a new club record, while they have only scored 15 times at home, the fewest in the league.
Another significant issue will be the half-time substitution of striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who impressed in the first 45 minutes but was replaced by Neal Maupay, a striker with one goal in his previous 39 games.