Belfast Telegraph

Man City's Zabaleta wants Aguero to keep firing

Man City 4 - Crystal Palace 0

By Andy Hampson

Pablo Zabaleta hopes there is plenty more to come from Sergio Aguero after his fellow Argentinian's double in Manchester City's 4-0 defeat of Crystal Palace.

The prolific striker struck either side of half-time and set up David Silva as title-chasing City eased to three points in the snow at the Etihad Stadium.

It was the latest sign that Aguero's form is returning after recent injury setbacks, with hamstring and heel problems ruling him out after netting five against Newcastle in October.

The 27-year-old produced two ineffectual performances on his return, but has now scored four in his last five appearances and, with City fighting in four competitions, momentum could be building at a critical time.

"He is one of the main players for the team - we need the best Sergio Aguero week in, week out," right-back Zabaleta, who is also finding his way back to fitness after a knee injury, said.

"There is a still a long way to go and this is a crucial period. We are involved in four competitions. Hopefully he can continue and be 100 per cent fit until the end of the season. If he continues being that clinical, I am sure we will have chances to win games."

City actually made a sluggish start against Palace. Damien Delaney headed an early chance at Joe Hart and shot over after a mistake by the goalkeeper and Scott Dann also had a header.

But once City had taken the lead through Fabian Delph's long-range strike in the 21st minute they did not really seem in danger. Aguero doubled the lead before the break and then tapped in a third after 68 minutes.

He might have completed a hat-trick after breaking from inside his own half late on, but selflessly passed up the chance to allow Silva to complete the scoring.

Zabaleta, who racked up his 200th Premier League appearance on his 31st birthday, said: "I am very happy. It is three important points after we dropped two points last game against Everton. It is a huge win."

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