Man City regain third position

Manchester, November 6:

Stephen Ireland volleyed Manchester City to a 1-0 victory over Sunderland on Monday, boosting Sven-Goran Eriksson’s three places into third in the English Premier League.

Outplayed for long spells by the Black Cats before a crowd of 40,000 at the City of Manchester Stadium, Eriksson’s team bounced back from last week’s 6-0 defeat to Chelsea, climbing past the Blues and just behind Arsenal and Manchester United.

The Gunners and United, who drew 2-2 on Saturday, have 27 points each, two more than City and three better than Chelsea.

Sunderland extended their winless streak to six matches and remained 15th in the 20-team table while Manchester City won their seventh straight at home dating back to last season. Anthony Stokes came close for the Black Cats midway through the first half when he rose to meet a cross from Grant Leadbitter, but steered his header wide of the post.

The only goal came in the 67th when Rolando Bianchi’s header enabled Darius Vassell to beat his marker and cross for Ireland to volley home from 10 yards. Five minutes after Ireland’s goal, Leadbitter had a chance to equalise with a low shot which was blocked on the line by City defender Richard Dunne.