Toure brace puts City on title brink

Yaya Toure blasted Manchester City to within touching distance of the Barclays Premier League title with a hard-fought victory at Newcastle.

Toure running the show for the Citizens.

The Ivory Coast international struck twice in the final 20 minutes of a pulsating contest to secure a 2-0 win and three precious points and send City into next Sunday's final-day clash with QPR in pole position to claim their first title in 44 years.

City's last triumph in 1968 came courtesy of a 4-3 win at St James' Park, and Sunday's victory could prove almost as pivotal.

Having climbed to the top of the table with Monday's derby victory over Manchester United, Roberto Mancini's men remain top on goal difference after the Red Devils defeated Swansea 2-0 later on Sunday.

That means City lead by eight goals at the summit ahead of the final day of the season.

City now know that they will celebrate their first top-flight crown since 1968 if they can overcome relegation-threatened Queens Park Rangers, and former manager Mark Hughes, at the Etihad Stadium next weekend.

A tense afternoon on Tyneside was settled by two goals from Toure, with the Ivory Coast international given more freedom by the introduction of midfield enforcer Nigel de Jong in place of Samir Nasri in the 61st minute.

The deadlock was broken just nine minutes later as Toure curled home a superb shot from outside the box which gave Tim Krul no chance after exchanging passes with Sergio Aguero, with De Jong also involved in the build-up to the goal.

With the Magpies pushing for an equaliser in their Champions League chase, City broke from a corner with Toure sweeping the ball home from close range after a neat move involving Aguero, De Jong and Gael Clichy.

City's last triumph 44 years ago came courtesy of a 4-3 win at St James' Park, and this victory could prove almost as pivotal.

Mancini's players celebrated just as lustily as their fans high in the stand behind Krul's goal after the final whistle with the promise of glory tantalisingly close.

United kept the title race going to to the final day of the season with victory over Swansea, but they failed to find the glut of goals they needed to turn up the heat on City.

Sir Alex Ferguson's men produced an impressive performance against the Swans with Paul Scholes' clever flick from close-range putting them in front just before the half-hour mark.

Ashley Young then fired in a second before half-time and there was a sense of urgency about United as they pressed forward looking to add to their advantage.

However, any possibility of the Red Devils running up such an emphatic victory that they would have a chance to finish with a better goal difference than City disappeared in the second half as Swansea displayed the sort of spirit they have shown all season to make life difficult for the title hopefuls.

The title will therefore be decided on the final day of the season as United remain level on points with their Manchester rivals ahead of their journey to Sunderland.

There was even more drama at the bottom, with Bolton and QPR suffering differing late fortunes.

With both needing a win to boost their survival hopes, QPR got one thanks to substitute Djibril Cisse`s 89th-minute goal that earned them a 1-0 success over Stoke.

Bolton too appeared set for victory, with Martin Petrov`s 23rd-minute penalty and Billy Jones` own goal putting them 2-0 ahead against West Brom.

But despite knowing manager Roy Hodgson is leaving them to take the England job, West Brom rallied back and Chris Brunt (75) and James Morrison (90) stunned the Reebok Stadium in to silence.

As a result, Bolton are two points shy of safety in the final relegation position, and Blackburn will be relegated if they fail to beat Wigan on Monday night.

That also means Aston Villa are safe, despite failing to see off 10-man Tottenham at Villa Park.

They took the lead through Ciaran Clark`s deflected effort 35 minutes in, and had a numerical advantage when Danny Rose was sent off for a studs-up tackle on Alan Hutton.

But Spurs hit back through Emmanuel Adebayor`s penalty after Richard Dunne felled Sandro, putting the London club back above Newcastle into the fourth and final Champions League spot.

Elsewhere, Clint Dempsey scored his 23rd goal of the season and Mousa Dembele struck the winner as Fulham beat Sunderland 2-1 at Craven Cottage.

The visitors had initially levelled through Phil Bardsley`s edge-of-the box rocket.

Wolves` clash with Everton ended goalless.

Sunday's Premier League Results

Newcastle 0-2 Man City

Match | Reaction | Player Ratings

Manchester United 2-0 Swansea

Match | Reaction | Player Ratings

Aston Villa 1-1 Tottenham

Match | Reaction 

Bolton 2-2 West Brom

Match | Reaction 

Fulham 2-1 Sunderland

Match | Reaction 

QPR 1-0 Stoke

Match | Reaction 

Wolves 0-0 Everton

Match | Reaction 

Saturday's Premier League Result

Arsenal 3-3 Norwich

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