MANCHESTER: Bernardo Corradi finally got off the mark for Manchester City as his side outplayed Fulham 3-1 in the English Premier League at Eastlands on Saturday.

Italian striker Corradi scored twice in the first half, his first goals since his pre-season move from Valencia, and Joey Barton added a third before Collins John pulled one back for Fulham.

Drawing first blood

Corradi gratefully seized his chance and gave City the lead in the 12th minute after combining well with strike partner Giorgios Samaras.

The Greek forward lifted a pass from the edge of the Fulham penalty area and Corradi was perfectly placed to steer his shot past Antti Niemi.

After struggling to make an impact following a debut sending-off against Chelsea, Corradi, who had been without a goal for 12 matches, is beginning to look the part and his dominant display was too much for Fulham to handle.

He was denied a second goal when Niemi managed to block his shot from Hatem Trabelsi's pass.

Fulham briefly threatened when Senegal midfielder Papa Bouba Diop headed a good chance straight at Nicky Weaver.

Second best

But Chris Coleman's team was second best throughout and Corradi increased the lead in the 32nd minute.

Claudio Reyna won a challenge in midfield that Fulham felt should have been given as a foul and the ball broke to Barton, who surged towards goal before supplying Corradi.

The Italian's confidence after his first goal was apparent as he looked up and dispatched a clinical strike past Niemi.

Just when Fulham thought it had made it to the sanctuary of half-time without any further damage, Tunisian Trabelsi pounced on a loose pass and fed Barton, who drove home to complete a perfect first 45 minutes for City.

The results: Premier League: Manchester City 3 bt Fulham 1.

League Championship: Birmingham 1 drew with Wolverhampton 1. AP

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