Manchester City are clear frontrunners in Premier League title race with 15 points clear on top and have reached through to the semis of the League cup competition as well. The Citizens started their FA Cup journey this afternoon when they hosted Burnley at Etihad in the third round tie and Pep Guardiola, the City boss, fielded a strong side with a view to achieving a domestic treble.
Burnley have been exceptional this season in the league and expected to come up with a stiff competition like their previous away outings against Premier League big guns. The Clarets had a dream inception when they were leading 1-0 at half-time, but the rampant Citizens stormed in the second half and scored four times to clinch another win ahead of their League Cup semi-final first leg tie against Bristol City followed by next weekend’s Anfield trip to contest Liverpool in Premier League.
Below are the Manchester City players rated from their commanding 4-1 win against Burnley.
Claudio Bravo: 6
Lost his first-team slot to Ederson but has been preferred in cup competitions and the Chilean wasn’t troubled much except Ashley Barnes’ thunderous first-half strike which earned the visitors an early lead.
Started in place of Kyle Walker, lacked the pace up front, had one embarrassing miscued effort but did well defensively and improved later on when City chased the game in the second-half. Offered more forward runs and passes, worked his socks off and took part in goal-bound movements.
John Stones: 5.5
Stones were at fault in Burnley’s opener when he miscued his clearance and Barnes grabbed the opportunity with a thunderous strike to put his side ahead. Looked nervy aerially against Sam Vokes but came out victorious thanks to his side’s lethal attackers.
Nicolas Otamendi: 8
The Argentine is truly enjoying the form of his life and delivered another stellar defensive performance for the Citizens.
Oleksandr Zinchenko: 6.5
The Ukranian youngster was introduced in a makeshift left-back role and despite being a little rusty at times while tackling, Zinchenko did a fair job before being taken off to be replaced by Kyle Walker in the second-half.
The Brazilian delivered another steady performance in midfield as he screened his defence whenever needed and took part in the build-up on many occasions.
David Silva: 8
Once again ran the show from midfield after a quiet first-half and was instrumental in Leroy Sane’s goal that drew an end to Burnley’s comeback hopes.
Ilkay Gundogan: 8.5
Gundogan has not been a regular starter but grabbed his opportunity sensationally against a decent opponent. Was cunning to take a quick free-kick that helped Aguero to equalize and he found the Argentine hitman minutes later with a sublime backheel assist through Burnley defence which was calmly slotted home by the prolific forward. Was replaced by Kevin De Bruyne late in the game.
Raheem Sterling: 7.5
The in-form wingman could not find the back of the net but kept on troubling the Burnley backline persistently with his pace, tricky runs and cut insides.
Leroy Sane: 9
Exceptional down the left wing as he scored once and assisted Bernardo Silva for his side’s fourth goal of the afternoon. The German youngster was struggling to find his form but today’s outing will help him to get back his rhythm ahead of crucial League Cup semi-final tie followed by the Liverpool trip.
Sergio Aguero: 9
Continued his sensational FA Cup form as he netted twice early in the second half to overcome a one-goal deficit and scripted a win for his side. With Gabriel Jesus’ injury, Aguero is the main man in City frontline now and the Argentine needs to stay fit and continue his scoring run amid a busy schedule. Was taken off late in the game to be replaced by Bernardo Silva.
Kyle Walker: 6.5
Came in place of Zinchenko. Played in his usual right-back role sending Danilo in the opposite flank.
Kevin De Bruyne: 7.5
His late cameo helped the hosts to score their fourth of the afternoon when his majestic through ball found Sane who calmly beat onrushing Nick Pope to set it up for Bernardo Silva. The Portuguese made no mistake to put the ball in the empty net.
Bernardo Silva: 7.5
Was handed a few minutes towards the end and scored his side’s fourth in the afternoon after picking up Sane’s pass and put it in the back of the net.
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