London (AFP) – Chelsea opened up a two-point lead at the top of the Premier League with a 7-0 demolition of Norwich, while Phil Foden starred as Manchester City moved up to second place after a 4-1 victory at Brighton on Saturday.
Mason Mount scored a hat-trick for the Blues at Stamford Bridge as the European champions coped easily without first-choice strikers Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner.
Mount started the rout after just eight minutes and finished it with two more in the closing stages after Ben Gibson had been sent-off for the visitors.
Callum Hudson-Odoi, Reece James and Ben Chilwell were also on target for Thomas Tuchel’s men, while Max Aarons’ own goal summed up a sorry day for the Canaries.
Mount had not scored since May and Tuchel welcomed his return to scoring form with Lukaku and Werner expected to be out for some time.
“No matter how satisfied the coach is, the offensive guys need goals to be fully happy,” said Tuchel.
“He waited too long, so it was good that he got some goals. I agree he looked fresh again today.”
Norwich already look destined for a swift return to the Championship with only two points and minus-21 goal difference from their opening nine games.
At the Amex Stadium, champions Manchester City underlined their determination to hold onto the title with a commanding performance.
City took the lead after 12 minutes when Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez spilled the ball under pressure and Ilkay Gundogan applied the finish.
Bernardo Silva launched the rapid raid that produced City’s second goal in the 28th minute as he fed Jack Grealish for a low cross that Foden converted in clinical fashion.
Three minutes later, Grealish’s shot was blocked into the path of Jesus, whose effort deflected off Foden and past Sanchez.
Alex Mac Allister got one back for Brighton with an 81st minute penalty after Ederson fouled Enock Mwepu.
But Riyad Mahrez converted Foden’s pass to wrap up an emphatic win in stoppage-time.
Pep Guardiola’s side are unbeaten in eight league games since losing to Tottenham on the opening weekend.
Liverpool would climb back above City into second place, within one point of Chelsea, if they win at arch rivals Manchester United on Sunday.
– VAR to Newcastle’s rescue –
Newcastle’s wait for a Premier League win went on after a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace.
Newcastle’s new Saudi owners were given another reminder of the investment it will take to make the Magpies a force to be reckoned with at Selhurst Park.
Interim manager Graeme Jones took charge for the first time since Steve Bruce was sacked and needed a moment of brilliance from Callum Wilson just to salvage a point.
Christian Benteke headed the Patrick Vieira’s men in front.
Wilson showed the value of a proven goalscorer with a stunning overhead kick into the top corner 25 minutes from time.
Newcastle stay second bottom, but are just three points adrift of safety.
Claudio Ranieri got his first win as Watford manager as the Hornets twice came from behind to stun Everton 5-2 at Goodison Park.
Josh King failed to score as an Everton player last season, but hit a hat-trick to help move Watford six points clear of the relegation zone.
Juraj Kucka and Emmanuel Dennis were also on target for the visitors, who scored four times in the final 12 minutes.
Leeds needed a stoppage-time penalty to earn a 1-1 draw at home to Wolves.
South Korean international Hwang Hee-chan opened the scoring at Elland Road.
Wolves were set to move up to fifth until Joe Gelhardt was fouled inside the area in the 94th minute and Rodrigo slotted home the penalty.
Burnley remain in the bottom three, but Maxwel Cornet is proving himself a shrewd signing for Sean Dyche’s men as the Ivorian scored twice in a 2-2 draw at Southampton.
Saints turned the game around after Cornet opened the scoring to take the lead with goals from Tino Livramento and Armando Broja.
The former Lyon winger then salvaged a point for the Clarets with a thumping finish on the volley from outside the area.