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Man City defeats Leicester, Leeds, Wolverhampton COVID-19 postponements

Manchester City isn’t short of goals in the title defence, and the champions found a way to make it unintentionally even more entertaining against Leicester.

A 6-3 victory — featuring a double from Raheem Sterling — put City six points in front at the top of the Premier League at the halfway point on Sunday, with second-place Liverpool having a game in hand.

It was a compelling second half on Boxing Day just when it looked like Leicester was completely out of sight after City had scored four times in the opening 25 minutes.

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Three goals in 10 second-half minutes offered Leicester a glimmer of hope of a comeback that was snuffed out by Aymeric Laporte’s header and Sterling’s second.

It secured a ninth successive victory for Pep Guardiola’s side, with the last three seeing 17 goals scored by City.

And while title rivals Chelsea and Liverpool are busy with two-legged League Cup semifinals at the start of January, the end of City’s defence of that title does give some recovery time after the packed Christmas and New Year schedule.

Meanwhile, Leeds and Wolverhampton have secured Premier League approval for further matches to be postponed due to coronavirus outbreaks in squads.

Leeds’ home game against Aston Villa on Tuesday has been called off, having already had Sunday’s match at Liverpool postponed.

Wolverhampton also won’t now play at Arsenal on Tuesday, with Wolverhampton having already been prevented from hosting Watford on Sunday due to a lack of Watford players.

The Premier League has now called off 15 matches because of coronavirus issues in 2 1/2 weeks, with players having to isolate after testing positive or if they are unvaccinated and a close contact of a COVID-19 case.

But Crystal Palace had its request rejected for Sunday’s game at Tottenham to be postponed. The league will have considered that Palace had enough players to fulfill the fixture which the south London club lost 3-0.

Palace was without manager Patrick Vieira who has started self-isolating for at least a week after contracting COVID-19.

The game at Tottenham is one of six Premier League fixtures on the Boxing Day program. Aston Villa announced Saturday that manager Steven Gerrard had tested positive for the coronavirus so he was absent from the game against Chelsea.

Three matches were postponed due to coronavirus infections across squads: Burnley vs. Everton, Liverpool vs. Leeds and Wolverhampton vs. Watford.

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