Manchester City secured a comfortable 2-0 win over Newcastle United in the FA Cup on Sunday. This win has set them up for a semi-final clash with Arsenal.
Earlier in the week, Pep Guardiola had announced that he had kept one eye on the quarter-final tie. It turns out the Catalan was true to his word.
He arguably organized his strongest line-up, while Claudio Bravo replaced Ederson in goal.
It was a one-sided match from there. City seemed into the mood of playing their game, with Newcastle able to sit back and let them down.
However, although Guardiola should have been pleased with their build-up play, the consistency finish was incredibly low.
Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling’s goals handed City a clean 0-2 victory, but they also missed out on several other chances.
Raheem Sterling hit the goal with a powerful attempt, but in vain. Meanwhile, Riyad Mahrez came close to scoring twice.
After 37 minutes, De Bruyne’s cross aimed for Gabriel Jesus but after a push from Javi Manquillo, the Brazilian found himself on the ground.
The incident had not been spotted by Referee Lee Mason, but a word from VAR official Andre Marriner helped him make the decision.
De Bruyne took control of the spot-kick. He made no error, slotting in the corner and sending Karl Darlow the wrong way.
So, having spent so much time fighting for their standing, Newcastle’s hard work was ruined by a moment of folly by Manquillo.
Toward the break, City couldn’t have done more to deserve their lead.
On the other hand, in the second half Newcastle knew they had to change their shape or face another assault. Indeed, Steve Bruce’s side moved the pitch up and started to cause some problems for City.
Meanwhile, as mentioned before, the visitors missed golden opportunities to make their lives more pleasant. Mahrez and Gabriel Jesus both came close to scoring but did not end up victorious.
Then came the moment which changed the game.
Allan Saint-Maximin, the brightest player in Newcastle, raced to the right and delivered a pinpoint cross for Dwight Gayle’s replacement.
With the goal at his mercy and just six yards out, the striker struck the ball. But the ball missed the net somehow and Newcastle’s chance was gone with it.
City retaliated by doubling their lead within 90 seconds of that chance.
Aymeric Laporte shot at Phil Foden and found Sterling who was cutting inside and bending his effort from 20 yards into the far corner. So, Sterling gave them their second goal.
City settled in their rhythm and rested on De Bruyne and David Silva, with greater testing ahead. They’ll face Arsenal on July 18-19 as Guardiola’s men look for a last-four spot in the bag to retain their title.
Newcastle United – Manchester City (0:2):
Goals: 0-1 De Bruyne 37′, 0-2 Sterling 68′
Yellow cards: Carroll 61′, Joelinton 90+2′
Man City: Bravo, Walker, Otamendi, Laporte, Mendy, Gundogan, Silva, Mahrez, De Bruyne, Sterling, Jesus
Newcastle: Darlow, Manquillo, Schar, Lascelles, Fernandez, Rose, Saint-Maximin, Hayden, Sean Longstaff, Almiron, Carroll