City crowned champion as United loses

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LONDON — Manchester City were crowned Premier League champion Sunday as Manchester United crashed to a shock 1-0 defeat against West Bromwich Albion.

City had moved within touching distance of the title with a 3-1 win at Tottenham Saturday.

It clinched the silverware 24 hours later, thanks to Albion forward Jay Rodriguez's 73rd minute header at Old Trafford.

City captain Vincent Kompany led the celebrations, tweeting: "Champions! What a great feeling! So happy to be able to share another trophy with our amazing fans!"

United had denied City the chance to wrap up the title last weekend when it came from two goals down to beat its bitter rival 3-2 at the Etihad Stadium.

But Jose Mourinho's men still ended up handing the trophy to City with a lackluster display against bottom of the table Albion, which had won only three times in the league this season before this weekend.

"Manchester City, we won it for you" chanted West Brom fans at full-time as United supporters began jeering in frustration at their side gift-wrapping the title for City.

City is 16 points clear of second placed United, which can only take a maximum of 15 points from its remaining five games.

Winning the title with five matches to go makes City the joint earliest champion in the Premier League era — matching the achievement of the 2000-01 Manchester United team.

"Our Time. Our City. Premier League Champions 17/18," City posted on their official Twitter account.

It is the fifth time City has been English champion and the third time in the last seven seasons.

City boss Pep Guardiola had planned a day of golf with his son Marius Sunday, so the Spaniard might have learned of his first Premier League while on the course.

Speaking after the win over Tottenham, Guardiola admitted winning the title in England would be one of the greatest achievements of his glittering career.

He won three league titles with Barcelona and twice lifted the Champions League trophy during his Camp Nou reign.

The 47-year-old also took the German title three times with Bayern Munich, but he believes the unique strength in depth and physical demands of the Premier League makes this triumph among his very best.

He also conceded it was sweet to triumph in a country where some critics claimed his purist principles couldn't flourish.

Guardiola and his players will have the chance to celebrate properly Sunday when they host Swansea in their next fixture.

Earlier, Newcastle United virtually guaranteed its Premier League safety as it came from a goal down to beat Arsenal 2-1 at a spring-like St James' Park.

Alexandre Lacazette's stretching volley gave Arsenal the lead in the 14th minute but Ayoze Perez clipped in Newcastle's equalizer on the half hour mark.

Newcastle was the better side after the break and took the lead in the 68th minute when Matt Ritchie fired home after a neat flick from Perez.

Arsenal pressed hard for an equalizer but Newcastle defended stoutly to claim a fourth successive victory.

Newcastle has 41 points in 10th place with sixth-placed Arsenal on 54 — 13 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur.

"40 points was the target at the start of the season and hopefully we've done enough now to secure our Premier League status," Ritchie told Sky Sports.

"Now we want to keep going and try to finish as high as we can in the table." — Agencies


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