Manchester City may have had a man sent off against Hull City, but they still secured a vital victory in the race for the title.
After a shock FA Cup exit at the hands of Wigan, and their failure to overturn a Champions League first-leg defeat against Barcelona, Manchester City must have wondered just how many ladders they had walked under when Vincent Kompany was dismissed after just 10 minutes on Saturday.
Needing a victory over Hull City to get back to winning ways and to put pressure on Chelsea at the top, it looked like being a hard slog being a man down with 80 minutes to play against the hard-working Tigers. But David Silva scored a sublime goal just four minutes after his skipper's dismissal and from then on the Blues looked good for the victory.
Edin Dzeko would add some gloss to the score-line in the final minute, but in truth Hull created few chances against a side who have stabilised after recent wobbles.
Hull had the majority of the ball (as you would expect given their one-man advantage), but it was the accuracy of City's finishing that won the day. They may have only managed three shots on target, but they scored from two of them.
The victory means City can still catch Jose Mourinho's side if they win their remaining two games in hand, and after the match, Gary Lineker praised the performance of Manuel Pellegrini's men.
He called the performance "gutsy, vital and impressive" and it could well be the difference between league success and regret come May.
You can see Lineker's tweet below:
Gutsy, vital and impressive win for Manchester City with 10 men.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) March 15, 2014