Goals either side of half-time by Riyad Mahrez and Kevin De Bruyne set Man City on course for a straightforward victory that saw Pep Guardiola’s side extend their lead to 12 points over Liverpool, who have two matches in hand including Thursday’s home game against Leicester City.
Man City took the lead from the penalty spot just before the break through Mahrez after Mads Roerslev fouled Raheem Sterling in the area. The Algeria international has now scored in seven straight games for his club.
De Bruyne doubled the hosts’ lead in the 69th minute after a rebound from a Sterling shot fell to him and he slotted home past Brentford keeper David Raya from a tight angle.
The rest of the match was a stroll for City, who easily could have added to the lead, as they stretched their unbeaten run to 14 league games and pulled further clear of second-placed Liverpool.
Brentford’s struggles continued after a fifth successive league defeat pulled them closer to the relegation zone. They sit 14th, six points above Norwich City in 18th, having played one game more.
Since losing 2-0 to Crystal Palace in October, City had won their last six Premier League home games by an aggregate score of 20-4 ahead of Brentford’s visit – just the opponent Thomas Frank’s out-of-form side did not want to be facing.
But other than a Joao Cancelo effort that was scooped over the top and Aymeric Laporte‘s side-foot wide, Brentford looked comfortable in their quest to blunt the relentless league leaders for most of the first half.
City did not need to hit top gear in the second half, such was their control. They scored a second without much effort, as Raya passed the ball straight to Sterling, whose shot was blocked into the path of De Bruyne, with the Belgian slotting his seventh league goal of the season into the empty net.
Spanish midfielder Rodri almost made it three late on, but Raya kept his scuffed strike out, with City goalkeeper Ederson seeing out the 100th clean sheet in the Premier League under Guardiola with ease down the other end.
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