Manchester City continued their rampant form as they outclassed Championship side Cardiff City 2-0 in Sunday’s FA Cup fourth-round tie at the Cardiff City Stadium in Wales.
- Cardiff City 0 Manchester City 2
- De Bruyne slots home low free-kick
- Hoilett worries Bravo with strike
- Sterling heads home second
- Etheridge denies the same player
City were the dominant team and De Bruyne struck home a fine free-kick in the eighth minute. Junior Hoilett was close to an equaliser when Claudio Bravo fluffed his handling from a long distance effort.
Bernardo Silva fired home not long after but was denied by a contentious decision from the officiating team. It mattered little as Raheem Sterling headed home Silva’s cross in the 37th minute.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) January 28, 2018
Manchester City made the expected positive start as they put the Championship high-flyers on the back-foot. The Citizens won a free-kick in the seventh minute when Ilkay Gundogan was crudely brought down just outside the area.
De Bruyne stepped up and showed his world-class qualities as he slotted a low strike into the bottom right-hand corner as Cardiff’s wall jumped, anticipating a higher curling effort.
However, Neil Warnock’s men showed character to stay in the contest and thought they had pulled a goal back in the 16th minute when Hoilett fired in an ambitious effort on goal from around 35-yards. Bravo appeared to make a hash of his handling but managed to claw the rebound off the line.
There was controversy in the 25th minute as Silva burst forward on the central area of the box and fired home superbly beyond Neil Etheridge. The flag went up as Leroy Sane was adjudged to have obstructed the keeper’s vision though it appeared a dubious decision.
Nonetheless, the visitors were once again oozing class and the impressive Silva then created the second in the 37th minute. From broken play, the Portugal star was set free on the left-hand side and he hit a delightful curling cross which the diminutive Raheem Sterling headed home.
After the break, it was more of the same as City’s absolute dominance of possession continued, however, the away outfit seemed content to see out the second period.
With that said, Hoilett produced a moment of magic in the 68th minute as he found space from distance and smashed a rocket on target that whistled just over Bravo’s crossbar.
Nevertheless, it was more a matter when a third might come as De Bruyne sent Sterling clear but he saw his effort blocked by the legs of Etheridge in goal. Pep Guardiola’s men were full value for the victory as they advanced to the fifth round.