REUTERS - Manchester City moved five points clear at the top of the Premier League as Sergio Aguero’s record-equalling strike set them on their way to a 3-0 win over Burnley at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.
City were not at their all-action best early on as Burnley looked comfortable at the back, but the game turned on a penalty decision that incensed the visitors when Bernardo Silva was adjudged to have been brought down by Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope just before the half hour.
Aguero stepped up to score the goal that moved him level with Eric Brook on 177 City goals, before a 73rd-minute Nicolas Otamendi header and a smart Leroy Sane finish made sure of victory in the Manchester rain.
With Manchester United slipping to a surprise defeat at Huddersfield, City now sit five points clear at the top of the table after a club record-equalling 11th straight win in all competitions. Burnley stayed ninth.
“It means a lot,” Guardiola said of the achievement. “The record is good if you lift something - titles or a trophy.”
City did not immediately hit their stride, however, as Burnley had the first real opening of the game, with Ederson forced to rush from his line to deny striker Chris Wood.
At the other end Pope made a smart save from a Bernardo Silva effort but, moments later, City did take the lead as Aguero wrote his name in City folklore, sweeping home from the spot as referee Roger East continued to try to calm the Burnley players down.
“How the referee has seen it,” Burnley manager Sean Dyche said after the game. “I had to watch it four times to see contact. If that’s a penalty then I want one on Chris Wood last week. We just want parity.”
After the break, Burnley could indeed have had a spot kick of their own, but referee East waved away appeals for handball against Fabian Delph, before City made sure of the victory with two more goals, taking them to 32 in just nine games.
Sane whipped a cross onto the head of Otamendi for the Argentina international to steer the ball home, before Kevin De Bruyne laid on a perfect pass for Sane to make it three as City remain the team to beat in the Premier League.
Reporting by Peter Hall, editing by Ed Osmond and Christian Radnedge