MANCHESTER, England -- Three thoughts from the Etihad Stadium after Manchester City claimed a 2-0 victory over Leicester City on Wednesday.
1. Manchester City back to winning ways
This was the calm after the storm for Manchester City. They had suffered twin defeats to Barcelona and Liverpool. A third successive setback would have rendered this their worst run since 2010 and heightened the scrutiny on the under-pressure Manuel Pellegrini. Yet at times such as these, the easiest fixture on paper...
After 45 turgid minutes at the Etihad, Manchester City had barely raised a shot toward Mark Schwarzer's goal. With a single minute of injury time to be added on, it looked likely to continue in the same vein until the break, but a scruffy goal from David Silva summed up the football and -- just about -- City's bitty, untidy dominance of this game.
City fans have seen many scruffy, listless and uncoordinated games with comical moments of slapstick like Wednesday night's game down the years, but...
Joe Hart admitted Manchester City's defensive record has been too poor this season -- even as he gave an resounding endorsement of the dropped Vincent Kompany by saying the Belgian will soon show why he is one of the world's top centre-backs.
In three rounds of Premier League games since Insider's previous Prem Forecaster, little has ultimately changed in the title or relegation races, though Chelsea did stumble momentarily. The Champions League race is where the true drama took place, as one team's struggles were a boon for two others.
As a reminder, the Forecaster is an end-of-season table projection fueled by ESPN's Soccer Power Index (SPI), a regression-based algorithm designed to predict soccer matches. SPI simulates the remainder of the season 10,000 times, using the odds of each projected match, with the end result presented in the table below.
In this edition we examine table risers and fallers over the past few weeks; break down the title, Champions League and relegation battles; and preview an upcoming match with major Champions League qualification implications. To begin, here's our updated top-to-bottom table forecast: