Manchester City maintained pace with their title rivals, whilst proving their doubters wrong in the process, as they sealed a dramatic comeback courtesy of two moments of individual brilliance in the final minutes at Vicarage Road.
Travelling away against a tough Watford side, it was never going to be an easy game for Manuel Pellegrini's side. He opted against any alterations to his starting line-up before kick-off, but the Hornets could have easily held a two-goal cushion inside the early exchanges. Buoyed by an energetic home crowd, Quique Sánchez Flores' men were playing with both confidence and quality - but were unable to convert their opportunities as the game continued.
Hornets start quickly - with purpose
Almen Abdi's swerving effort from the edge of the area after just a minute or so on the clock emphasised the hosts' intent to counter-attack at speed and hurt their opponents - trying to utilise City's defensive frailties with constant pressure upon their centre-backs. Nicolas Otámendi made a fantastic sliding interception to deny Odion Ighalo from having a one-on-one opportunity to break the deadlock, but the talented Argentine could ultimately do nothing to stop the red-hot Nigerian forward once he got into his stride.
Ighalo's beautiful skill allowed him to get past Otámendi with a flash, but Joe Hart made an important save with his outstretched leg to keep the scores level.
Citizens build up steam
Kevin de Bruyne tried his luck from range, but was denied by a good stop at the other end minutes later from Heurelho Gomes. The talented Belgian was constantly eager to help create chances in the final third, but his teammates were struggling for the clinical touch infront of goal.
As the game continued though, the Citizens grew in confidence. They began to soak up the hosts' pressure, and counter with speed of their own. Raheem Sterling and David Silva in particular were dangerous as they both looked to patiently unlock the Watford backline as the first-half came to an eventual close.
At the half-time interval, it was goalless. But you could certainly tell by the amount of chances created, it was inevitably not going to stay that way for much longer. Less than ten minutes into the second-half, the deadlock was broken. Ben Watson's swerving corner-kick was harmlessly flicked on by Aleksandar Kolarov - but the Serbian headed the ball backward, past Hart, into his own net.
City were understandably disappointed, but didn't let that stop them in their tracks. Instead they cranked up the pressure a few notches as Touré had several attempts on goal, Fernandinho had a viable penalty appeal waved away, and they were genuinely hungry for an equaliser.
Eventually it came, from the boot of Touré. He has a frustrating tendency to wander through games, but his sweetly-connected volley changed the complexity of the game within an instant - and minutes later, a moment of brilliance from Sergio Agüero sealed all three points.
The forward, who has been plagued with injuries of late, came up with the goods in the right place at the right time to head home from a tricky angle - giving Gomes no chance. As a result, the sky Blues stay just three points within league leaders Arsenal, and they'll be eager to put their spell of inconsistency behind them as the Premier League enters the business end of the campaign.