City edge Swansea to take first pole of 2014
Manchester City's Ivorian midfielder Yaya Toure (R) watched by Swansea defenders during the English Premier League match at The Liberty Stadium in Swansea, south Wales on January 1, 2014 RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or “live” services. Online in-match use limited to 45 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications.
City's Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho scored the first goal of the new year in the 14th minute at a rain-soaked Liberty Stadium, drilling home right-footed after Swansea partially cleared a Samir Nasri corner.
Ivorian striker Wilfried Bony equalised with a well-placed header in first-half stoppage time, but his international colleague Yaya Toure restored the visitors' lead with a deflected shot in the 58th minute.
City's Serbian left-back Aleksandar Kolarov added a third eight minutes later, lashing a powerful strike past Swansea goalkeeper Gerhard Tremmel, before Bony struck again in injury time with a vicious low shot.
Victory took Manuel Pellegrini's side two points clear of former leaders Arsenal, who host Cardiff City later on Saturday in one of 10 New Year's Day matches, while Swansea remain 11th.
Third-place Chelsea, who now trail City by four points, visit Southampton, while fourth-place Everton travel to Stoke City and fifth-place Liverpool host Hull City.
Sixth faces seventh in the day's late kick-off, with Manchester United welcoming Tottenham Hotspur to Old Trafford.
Meanwhile, French striker Nicolas Anelka was named in West Bromwich Albion's starting XI against Newcastle United despite being under investigation by the Football Association over an allegedly anti-Semitic gesture.