CARLOS TEVEZ blasted a 12-minute hat-trick as Manchester City boosted their chances of a Champions League place with victory over 10-man Wigan.
Tevez punished Wigan with a clinical second half treble which came after Latics defender Gary Caldwell was sent off for a two-footed tackle on the Argentinian striker.
It took Tevez’s tally for the season to 25 and fired Roberto Mancini’s men back up to fifth in the table, two points behind Tottenham in fourth.
City enjoyed the majority of possession in the first half but seemed to lack ideas until Caldwell’s dismissal on 56 minutes.
First, Tevez took advantage of a calamitous goalkeeping error from Vladimir Stojkovic to put City in front, and then doubled the lead two minutes later when sliding in Javier Garrido’s cross. He then rounded it off with a fine solo effort six minutes from time after beating two men and firing home from outside of the box.
Meanwhile, Newcastle moved one step closer to a Premier League return after a 2-0 home win to Nottingham Forest. Second half goals from Shola Ameobi and Jose Enrique means the Magpies will be promoted if they win at Peterborough on Saturday and third-placed Forest lose at Bristol City.