A superb Phil Foden goal proved decisive as Man City made it four league wins in a row after defeating Brighton at the Etihad.
Man City predictably took immediate control of possession in the early stages.
Tempo was lacking in their play initially, but the pace soon quickened as the 15 minute mark approached.
A flowing move saw Ilkay Gundogan put Kevin De Bruyne through on goal, but Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez made himself big to repel the Belgian’s low effort.
The increased risk in their attacking play soon opened the door for the Seagulls to counter.
Lenadro Trossard was set free, and despite the close attentions of both City centre-halves, curled an effort narrowly past Ederson’s far post.
City were then offered a unique opportunity to score from an indirect free-kick barely 10-yards from goal.
Adam Webster’s backpass was picked up by Sanchez, but Alexis Mac Allister reacted sharply to block De Bruyne’s goalbound effort from the resulting set piece.
A rare foray into the Man City have brought a corner for Brighton. Trossard’s delivery made light work for Ederson, who’s quick distribution set a counter in motion.
De Bruyne and Foden broke at pace, with De Bruyne ultimately forcing a save from a shot that proved too central.
On the stroke of half-time, the deadlock was finally broken in truly impressive fashion.
De Bruyne and Foden combined once more to set the youngster away before firing low and accurately with his weaker foot into the bottom corner.
A beautifully worked goal from Phil Foden! 👏
The perfect first touch to create the space, and he picks his spot inside the near post 🎯
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 13, 2021
Man City continued to dominate after the break, and somehow failed to double their advantage during a crazy 60-second spell.
Mahrez curled a low drive narrowly wide before Gundogan saw his effort superbly saved. The rebound fell to Bernardo Silva, and after taking a touch to control a high ball, fired a shot against the woodwork, much to Brighton’s relief.
Further chances came and went from Joao Cancelo and the vibrant De Bruyne. It seemed only a matter of time before a second goal would come.
As full-time neared, Brighton upped their game as they went in search of what would be a crucial point.
Wastefulness set in from dead ball situations, however, ensuring their greatest chances of equalising frequently came to nothing.
City would ultimately go on to secure a 1-0 victory after Raheem Sterling blazed an injury time penalty over the crossbar.
The win thrusts themselves back into the top four and in the thick of what promises to be a hotly-contested title race.