It was a vintage FA Cup tie in which Manchester City dramatically went down to 2-0 at 30 minutes by a determined Swansea side playing some great attacking football. Pep Guardiola was forced into making all 3 changes before Bernardo Silva rifled in an outside footed shot which got City back in the tie. A soft penalty to Raheem Sterling, comically converted by Aguero and a 89th minute winner which was dubiously offside (do we really care lads?) finally won it for City in normal time.
Here’s how we rated the players:
Ederson – 6
Had to cover a lot for the center-backs as they started leaving a lot of space for Swansea to counter into. Did reasonably well and was nerveless as usual on the ball when under pressure.
Kyle Walker – 5
Was quite poor in the first half, didn’t track James at all for the second goal and his balls into the box were quite bad, often playing the ball where no blue shirts existed. Improved in the second half and should have gotten an assist.
Nicolas Otamendi – 8
Was put under quite a lot of pressure by the Swansea attack and he had to put in strong challenges. Almost all of them were clean and he didn’t even get a booking like his defensive partner.
Aymeric Laporte – 6
Was not at his best, putting in poor tackles and was held back by having Delph next to him. He improved when Zinchenko was subbed on.
Fabian Delph – 0
Absolutely hapless while defending and clueless going forward. This will probably be his last game in a City shirt and he should be happy that his first half antics didn’t cost City the FA Cup for the second year running. Poor tackle for penalty, lost the ball when he tucked into midfield and was no use in the final third.
Ilkay Gündogan – 5
Not his best match recently. He’s not Fernandinho and one of the reasons he’s shone in the Brazilian’s role recently is because teams have not taken the game to City, allowing him to be a quarterback, someone dictating the game from deep. Swansea ran out at City like their shoes were on fire and he was not as adept as a firefighter. Improved in the second half and regulated the ball well as City turned it up a few notches.
Bernardo Silva – 10 (Man of the Match)
The game-changer. He was City’s best midfielder, right winger and left winger in the same match. An absolute engine, he never stopped running and his finish which injected the much needed spirit into the match was world-class. Also got the assist for Aguero’s winner and he was without doubt, the best player on the pitch today. Glad we’ve signed him up for the next 6 years.
David Silva – 7
He was a little better than he has been lately. Kept the ball well, tried to run into the box and a few of his tricks and touches were fascinating to watch. Struggled to turn up the screw when City went down two goals but he kept his intensity and will surely be better after a well deserved couple weeks of rest.
Gabriel Jesus – 6
Given an oppurtunity to show his worth from the start, he wasn’t afforded the best service and he struggled to get into match. Most of his first half was spent chasing the ball and trying to lead the City press against Swansea’s defense playing out from the back. Was caught offside a lot more than he would have liked but a decent performance all around.
Leroy Sané – 6
Sané started the match well but his performance trailed off and his final ball, be it a cross or a shot wasn’t up to the mark. Kept the ball for too long on occasion and was rightly replaced in the second half. His performance could’ve also been affected by a minor knock that left him limping for a few minutes in the first half.
Riyad Mahrez – 5
Just like Sane, he started well and looked energetic. However, sloppiness started coming into his game as the match went on, something he can’t afford if he wants to start more often. Needs to start taking games by the scruff of the neck to consolidate his position as an important member of the squad.
Oleksandr Zinchenko – 8
I wanted to give him a 10 just for being a left back who’s fit and not shit. He really revamped the left hand side and helped to keep the ball by going wide and tucking into midfield whenever needed. Could’ve had an assist for a coolly rolled ball across the Swansea box which Sterling ballooned over the bar. Growing to be an accomplished player in his makeshift position
Raheem Sterling – 7
Not at his usual best, our Raheem. He still won a penalty, mind and his ability to jink past defenders put Swansea on the back foot and even forced a substitution at left back from Graham Potter. Still a better player on the right, didn’t make an impact when he was initially substituted in the left.
Sergio Agüero – 8
After his classy midweek panenka, Aguero decided to take it upon himself to score the most comical penalty in recent times (Sorry, Celina, you didn’t score in midweek). He slipped and hit the inside of the post but the ball was deflected back off the diving goalkeeper’s foot. He picked up the assist for Bernardo’s goal and also managed to nestle in a lovely diving header right at death, albeit from an offside position. Having his best season for us, he will be crucial in the run in.
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