Manchester City used force to overcome a serious Southampton challenge and secure a place in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.
The Saints struggled for more than an hour in a tense encounter at St. Mary’s after Aymeric Laporte’s own goal at half-time canceled an early shot from Raheem Sterling.
In this FA Cup quarter-final, Mohammed Salisou recklessly challenged Gabriel Jesus, resulting in Kevin de Bruyne restoring City’s lead from a 62nd-minute penalty, effectively ending Southampton’s struggles.
Substitute Phil Foden’s superb left foot put an end to any faint hope of a Saints comeback and with City in full control, Riyad Mahrez added a fourth with 12 minutes to go.
Man City are up to the task
Manchester City lost clear winners, but before Salis’ unnecessary interference that resulted in a De Bruyne penalty, they threatened to pay the price for sloppy possession.
However, after De Bruyne scored the goal, City showed the quality and ruthlessness that saw them take first place in the Premier League and still qualify for the FA Cup and the Champions League.
Manager Josep Guardiola can also show that kind of strength off the bench, as evidenced by the contributions of Foden and Mahrez.
Foden’s goal in the 75th minute was beautiful: a 20-yard shot made a sweet thud that echoed through St. Mary’s as soon as he hit with his left foot.
Mahrez scored one goal and could have scored more, but once again the great conductor was Man of the Match De Bruyne, who pulled the strings and stepped forward to beat Fraser Forster on penalties to put City back in the lead.
The fact that City can win so convincingly without touching the heights they are capable of will sound like an ominous warning to anyone who wants to deprive them of any of the top three trophies they’ll be fighting for until the end of the season.
Saints Destroyed by Calling Salis
Southampton were giving as well as they were getting, until Mohammed Salisu made an unnecessary tackle on Jesus, hardly in a dangerous position and with a game in the balance.
City gratefully accepted the gift and the flamboyant atmosphere at the crowded St Mary’s subsided instantly, as if both the Southampton players and the supporters sensed the moment had come.
And so it turned out when City took advantage of the weakened Saints, who played with such energy and deserved so much praise in the first 62 minutes.
The intense style of play that has made them such difficult opponents for many teams this season has pushed City to errors in possession, one of which required a good save from goalkeeper Zach Steffen seconds before de Bruyne took the visitors out. back forward.
Saints could even equalize a second time when substitute Che Adams was blocked at point-blank range by Steffen, but it was an FA Cup quarter-final that was decided by a Salis challenge.
This does not mean that Southampton would have won, but this incident changed the focus of the match and Ralph Hasenhüttl’s team returned the initiative to Manchester City, which was never the best idea.
The Saints have made a big contribution to the FA Cup this season, but all they have left now is to continue to ensure respectability and consolidation of the Premier League in a season that has been promising.
- 17With ArmstrongReplaced withGenepoin 83′minutes
- 6RomeuReplaced withsmall bonein 88′minutes
- 8Ward Prowse
- 24ElyounoussiReplaced withDialloin 88′minutes
- nineArmstrongReplaced withAdamsin 63′minutes
- 7LongReplaced withBrochain 63′minutes
- twentysmall bone
- 13SteffenBooked for 71 min.
- fourteenLaporteReplaced withakein 83′minutes
- 27CanseluReplaced withZinchenkoin 82′minutes
- 17De Bruyne
- 16RodriReplaced withFernandinhoin 83′minutes
- nineGabriel JesusReplaced withMahrezin 63′minutes
- 10grayishReplaced withFodenin 64′minutes
- twentyBernardo Silva
- Mike Dean
- 29 702
Match ends, Southampton 1, Manchester City 4.
Second half ends, Southampton 1, Manchester City 4.
Attempt missed. Raheem Sterling (Man. City) misses the right with a header from very close range. Assisted by Ilkay Gundogan with a cross.
Foul committed by Phil Foden (Manchester City).
Jack Stephens (Southampton) takes the free-kick defensively.
Substitution, Southampton. William Smallbone replaced Oriol Romeu.
Substitution, Southampton. Ibrahima Diallo replaced Mohamed Elyounoussi.
Attempt missed. Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City) shoots with his right foot from the right side of the box, but misses to the left. Assistant Kevin De Bruyne.
Attempt saved. Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City) a right footed shot from the right side of the penalty area is deflected into the bottom right corner. Assistant Kevin De Bruyne.
Substitution, Southampton. Moussa Genepo replaced Stuart Armstrong.
Substitution, Manchester City. Nathan Ake replaced Aymeric Laporte.
Substitution, Manchester City. Fernandinho replaced Rodri.
Substitution, Manchester City. Oleksandr Zinchenko replaced Joao Cancela.
Attempt blocked. Stuart Armstrong (Southampton) left foot kick blocked from outside the box. Assisted by Oriol Romeu with his head.
Corner, Southampton. The ball was scored by Zach Steffen.
Corner, Southampton. Missed John Stones.
Target! Southampton 1, Manchester City 4. Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City) fires a left foot from the right side of the box into the bottom right corner. Assistant Ilkay Gundogan.
Target! Southampton 1, Manchester City 3. Phil Foden (Manchester City) shoots a left footed shot from outside the box into the bottom left corner.
Corner, Manchester City. The ball was scored by Valentino Livramento.
Attempt missed. Kyle Walker-Peters (Southampton) shoots with a right foot from outside the box and misses the right.