QPR frustrate Man City, Villa sink into drop zone
LONDON (AFP) - The post-Mario Balotelli era at Manchester City began in lacklustre fashion as they were held to a 0-0 draw at Queens Park Rangers on Tuesday that prevented them from making up ground on Manchester United.
Victory for City would have cut United's lead to just two points but instead Alex Ferguson's side will tackle Southampton on Wednesday with an opportunity to re-open a seven-point lead at the Premier League summit.
AC Milan claim Balotelli has agreed to join them and the troublesome Italian striker is expected to complete a switch to San Siro on Wednesday, but City could have done with some extra firepower at Loftus Road.
An injury to Vincent Kompany obliged the champions to start with Spanish midfielder Javi Garcia at centre-back, but they began with both Carlos Tevez and Sergio Aguero in attack as they sought to exploit bottom club QPR's defensive frailties.