Manchester City are within one point of their third-placed neighbours Manchester United after a 2-nil win in the Premier League over West Ham United, ending a difficult week on a high.
The victory came after a bad week in which City were beaten 4-2 by United in the Manchester derby, prompting speculation about the future of manager Manuel Pellegrini and a number of leading players.
City went ahead in the 18th minute when West Ham defender James Collins sliced Jesus Navas' cross over the head of goalkeeper Adrian, the ball bouncing off the underside of the crossbar for a spectacular own-goal.
But City's second goal, nine minutes before halftime, was all quality. Yaya Toure won the ball from West Ham and England winger Stewart Downing to launch a rapid counter-attack.
Sergio Aguero exchanged passes with winger Navas, collecting a superbly weighted return ball, before sliding a precise shot under Adrian.
City's playmaker David Silva was carried off on a stretcher in the second half with a head injury after he was caught by the elbow of Cheikhou Kouyate.
Champions City have 64 points, one behind United who lost 1-nil at Chelsea yesterday, and two adrift of second-placed Arsenal who have a game in hand.