Tuesday’s 3-0 victory over EFL Championship team Bristol City at Ashton Gate in Bristol, England, let Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City squad cruise into the FA Cup quarterfinals. Phil Foden scored twice in a rare start for Manchester City. For the best sports betting casinos of March 2023, make sure you pay a tour to CasinoDaddy’s pages!
Foden scored City’s first two goals before Kevin De Bruyne made it 3-0 in the 81st minute. Foden has recently been passed over in favor of Jack Grealish and Riyad Mahrez.
Despite Man City’s lackluster performance, don’t bet against them.
The majority of Man City supporters would tell you that Pep Guardiola’s squad’s performances this season have been the worst since the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach took over the team in 2016–17, the team’s only season without a title.
Given the heights Man City has attained since that season, those supporters are undoubtedly correct, but despite beating them at Ashton Gate, they are still in three tournaments, and it would be absurd to predict they will lose all of them.
Even though City is now in the FA Cup quarterfinals, there won’t be much discussion of a triple at the Etihad right now. Yet, make no mistake: Guardiola’s club is still capable of winning all three trophies. They face a home second leg against RB Leipzig in the Champions League round of 16 ties, with the score being tied at 1-1 from the first leg, and they are only two points off of Premier League leaders Arsenal.
City isn’t playing well right now and hasn’t been convincing in a while, but this win showed exactly why they still have a shot at a treble.
To prove a point to Guardiola, Phil Foden, who now seldom ever starts, scored twice. Kalvin Phillips and Julian Alvarez also had an opportunity to shine. Because of their depth, City can start games with players like Erling Haaland, Jack Grealish, and Rodri on the bench and still prevail.
The FA Cup odds favor them because of their recent trophy success, while the Champions League odds favor an inconsistent City since the greatest team hasn’t always won that competition. And it would be comical if, after so many years of dominating the competition, they finally won the Champions League this time around despite not being as strong.
One of the greatest midfielders to play in the Premier League is Kevin De Bruyne, but the 31-year-old is having trouble shaking off his post-World Cup form slump. Although his goal in the 81st minute of this victory was a typical De Bruyne goal, his otherwise subpar effort shouldn’t be overlooked.
De Bruyne has scored just twice in 13 matches since his return from Belgium’s early departure at the Qatar 2022 World Cup, and he has seldom given the type of explosive displays that have been synonymous with him while wearing a Man City jersey.
There are mitigating reasons for De Bruyne’s subpar performances in recent weeks, including the fact that he was forced to sit out the loss at Tottenham earlier this month and the Champions League match against RB Leipzig last week due to sickness. De Bruyne, on the other hand, only seems worn out after more than ten years at the top with Wolfsburg and City.
When the pivotal games arrive in April and May, Guardiola will need De Bruyne to be at his best since City is still fighting for victory on three fronts. Perhaps it’s time to give De Bruyne a rest so he can recover and be ready to go for the match.
Bristol City demonstrates that there is fresh potential outside of the PL
It would be wise to take notice of the name Alex Scott. Even though the 19-year-old midfielder for Bristol City was playing against the Premier League winners, he was perhaps the game’s finest player.
Scott resembles Man City’s £100 million sensation Jack Grealish, who was on the replacements’ bench for this game, with his socks turned down and a desire to rush at the opponents.
But he also showed that he had the guts to seize the initiative and search for opportunities further forward. Scott always looked ahead. When the best teams scout youngsters, one of the most important qualities any young player must possess is the willingness to be courageous enough to move forward rather than play it safe by passing backward or sideways.
Like Southampton star Matt Le Tissier, Scott is a native of the tiny island of Guernsey in the English Channel, and the kid has a bright future in the sport.
Sam Bell, another of Bristol City’s homegrown talents, who was excellent up front at the young age of 20, can be compared.
As they currently prefer European or South American divisions, few Premier League sides prioritize the lower levels of English football while hunting for fresh players. But, Scott and Bell demonstrated versus City that there is a wealth of talent in England that is worth monitoring outside of the Premier League.