By Mike Collett
LONDON (Reuters) – Sergio Aguero scored five times in 20 minutes including an eight-minute hat-trick as Manchester City came from behind to thrash Newcastle United 6-1 and go back to the top of the Premier League table on Saturday.
City, beaten by West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur in their last two league games, appeared to be in danger of another defeat after Aleksandar Mitrovic headed Newcastle ahead in the 18th minute at the Etihad Stadium.
The visitors, without a win so far, looked the better team for much of the first half but imploded as Aguero burst into life with goals after 42, 49, 50, 60 and 62 minutes.
With Kevin De Bruyne also on target, five of City’s six goals came in a dazzling 13-minute spell.
Victory lifted City on to 18 points, two ahead of Manchester United who play at Arsenal on Sunday.
Crystal Palace, who beat West Bromwich Albion 2-0 in the early kickoff, are third on 15 points, level with Leicester City who won 2-1 at Norwich City.
Aguero, who scored all four when City beat Spurs 4-1 last October, becomes only the fifth player in the Premier League era to score five in a game following Andy Cole, Alan Shearer, Jermain Defoe and Dimitar Berbatov.
But he was denied the chance to become the first player to score six in the Premier League when coach Manuel Pellegrini substituted him two minutes after his fifth goal.
Aguero headed his first three minutes before the break before he made it 2-1 with a deflected shot four minutes into the second half, completing his hat-trick when he ran through on goal a minute later.
De Bruyne’s volley in the 53rd minute made it 4-1 before Aguero struck City’s fifth with a curling shot in the 60th minute and completed his afternoon’s work with a close-range finish two minutes later.
Palace won with goals from Yannick Bolasie, who scored at home for the first time since New Year’s day 2013 and Yohan Cabaye’s 89th minute penalty, a week after scoring the match-winning penalty at Watford.
There was more gloom than light at the Stadium of Light where Sunderland, who like their north east neighbours Newcastle are still without a win, drew 2-2 with West Ham United after being 2-0 up.
Sunderland led with goals from Steven Fletcher and a screamer from Jermain Lens, but Lens was sent off in the second half and the Hammers escaped with a point thanks to goals from Carl Jenkinson and Dimitri Payet.
At least Sunderland climbed off the bottom of the table with Newcastle replacing them but manager Dick Advocaat would not confirm if he was staying at the club following rumours he was leaving.
Asked if he would be in charge for their upcoming games, he told Sky Sports: “I cannot say that. It is more important about the way the team played. My future is not so important.”
Stoke City won 1-0 at third from bottom Aston Villa with Marko Arnautovic scoring the only goal to leave Villa winless since the opening day of the season.
Bournemouth drew 1-1 with Watford whose Brazilian keeper Heurelho Gomes saved a late penalty from Glenn Murray, Bournemouth’s scorer.
Champions Chelsea, with skipper John Terry back in the starting lineup for a league match for the first time since Sept. 12, meet Southampton at Stamford Bridge in the late match kicking off at 1630GMT.
(Reporting by Mike Collett; editing by Martyn Herman)