Manchester City romp to win at Watford to ensure third place

LONDON: Manchester City made sure of third place in the Premier League when they romped to a 5-0 win at Watford on Sunday to ensure a Champions League berth for next season.

City were already 4-0 up at the break at Vicarage Road and finish the season with 78 points, ahead of Liverpool and Arsenal and behind Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.

They had needed only a point to ensure they would go straight into the group phase of the Champions League but quickly set about making sure of a strong finish to a trophy-less season.

Kompany opened the scoring with a fifth-minute header from a corner, followed by Sergio Aguero finishing off a counter attack set up by Kevin de Bruyne in the 23rd minute.

Thirteen minutes later Aguero netted his 33rd goal of the season at the end of another quick attack with Leroy Sane providing the decisive pass.

It was 4-0 in the 41st minute as Fernandinho powered through the defence to score from close range with another Brazilian, Gabriel Jesus, adding a fifth goal 13 minutes after the break.

"I am so happy, we go direct to Europe. Now we must reduce the gap to the elite in Europe and in the Premier League. We must play better," said manager Pep Guardiola.

"Congratulations to Chelsea and to Tottenham, we are so glad to be third. (We are) not a club with history of playing in Europe like United or Arsenal. But now we are there five or six years and now we can try to close the gap on the elite.

"The best team in Europe will be at the Etihad next season. I don't know what we need to add. This is one of the best groups I have ever trained, they never gave up. It was a pleasure to be with them."

The match was the last for Watford manager Walter Mazzarri with his club finishing one place above the relegation standings after 38 games.

His departure was announced last week but any hopes of a major scalp on the last day of the season evaporated quickly and he was jeered by his own fans during the game and failed to join an end-of-match lap of the stadium by his players.