FULL-TIME: City 5-0 Burnley
Mahrez has a half chance to get his fourth of the afternoon but the Burnley defence gets back to smother the shot.
And that’s it, the ref blows his whistle and it’s 5-0 to the hosts.
87 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
The match is meandering to its conclusion, but City still find time to hit the post. De Bruyne puts in an overlap run and is played in by Mahrez just inside the box, the Belgian shoots first time and the ball smashes against the far post. That would have been no more than De Bruyne deserved.
84 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
Bit of a lull now – not a total surprise, City have the game well won and Burnley know there is absolutely no way back into this.
81 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
Good chance for Burnley as Taylor plays in a great cross from the left which evades Stones and then catches Rodriguez unawares – possibly not expecting the ball to beat the City defender – and the ball goes long.
79 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
Mahrez pops up on the left and floats in a ball which Fernandinho heads over.
74 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
De Bruyne plays in a dangerous ball into the six-yard box and Peacock-Farrell in the Burnley goal does well, reading the play and coming out to intercept with Jesus lurking. But he fumbles it and it comes of his knee and into the box. Var, however, comes to his rescue and it is disallowed as the Brazilian striker was just offside.
72 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
Benson has no options on the edge of the box for Burnley and fires wide from distance. For all of their attacking flair City have also impressed without the ball.
71 mins: City 5-0 Burnley
Barnes cuts on to his left just outside the box and curls in a shot that just goes wide. Can Burnley get a consolation?
GOOOOOAAAALLLL!! City 5-0 Burnley
Mahrez hat-trick – his first for City.
Clinical stuff – De Bruyne, in the middle of the pitch, plays in Foden (on for Torres) who crosses first time to the back post and Mahrez heads home.
The quality and speed of City today has been great to watch and tough to take for the Burnley backline.
GOOOOOAAAALLLL!! City 4-0 Burnley
That was quality from the hosts, changing angles and the attack. Mahrez plays in Walker on the overlap down the right and he pulls it back for Jesus who controls the ball before laying it off for Torres who passes it into the bottom corner.
Simple and stylish, it’s clear City are back to their attacking best, it’s the first time this season they’ve scored four.
61 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
Wood is fouled right on the edge of the box and Burnley have a free-kick. Benson somehow gets the ball up and over the wall and it’s deflected for a corner. From the resulting set piece the Burnley players crowd Ederson and the keeper does well to punch clear. In the melee Tarkowski is hurt and there’s a break in play while the defender is checked out.
Good stuff from Burnley, they are at least asking some questions of City this half.
60 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
Lowton crosses for Wood but City head it out, the ball finds its way to Rodriguez who gets in a vicious half-volley that is well saved by Ederson.
57 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
More slick stuff from City and they work the ball in from the left flank. Jesus tries to play in Mahrez, on the hunt for a hat-trick, but Taylor gets in a vital and very good interception.
55 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
Fernandinho on for Rodri crosses to the back post for Jesus and Lowton defends well, putting the Brazilian off enough to head wide.
53 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
McNeil hits Wood up front but the Burnley striker had strayed offside. Wood wanted the ball earlier and looks frustrated, but some promising signs for visitors.
50 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
De Bruyne cuts in from the right and instead of playing in a pleading Jesus decides to fire in from long range. the shot goes high and wide and Jesus doesn’t look best pleased.
47 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
Hum drum start to the second period at the Etihad. Burnley have a free-kick on the right, Westwood plays the ball in to the back of the box, City clear it but the ball finds its way back to Westwood who floats a ball across the box to Tarkowski who gets a nudge from Dias, the ref sees no fault with the challenge and Burnley’s attack peters out.
45 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
Burnley are playing, you suspect, solely for pride now, they have to find some way to get into this game.
City open up the half with a long-range shot from Mahrez, the Algerian clearly fancies it today.
HALF-TIME: City 3-0 Burnley
The referee puts the visitors out of their misery. City have found their mojo and broken their run of only scoring one a game in emphatic style. Burnley have made too many mistakes, giving the ball away ushering City attacks. The hosts haven’t looked those gift horses in the mouth and are well worth their three-goal advantage.
44 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
Burnley again give the ball away on the edge of the box and Jesus picks it up, ignores all his team-mates screaming for the ball and fires over from close range having wriggled away from the attention of the Burnley backline.
42 mins: City 3-0 Burnley
It’s hard to see how Burnley get back into this. They needed to get the next goal at 2-0 down but at the moment it looks as though City have an extra man and for all the hosts’ defensive frailties this season there is no way they are going to surrender this three-goal advantage. City have their swagger back and it’s a case of how many they’ll win this now.
GOOOOOOAAAALLLLL!! City 3-0 Burnley
Wonderful goal – City break quickly as Jesus drives at the Burnley backline before playing in De Bruyne who plays a fine ball over the defence to Mendy on the left side of the box. The Frenchman hits it first time right into the corner of the net, he caressed it in.
This is the City of last and previous seasons. They have got their attacking mojo back and it’s a delight to watch.
34 mins: City 2-0 Burnley
Decent stuff from the visitors – Tarkowski plays a great long ball for Wood who heads it down to Westwood, he plays in Taylor whose cross finds the head of Barnes. The striker’s header is easily dealt with by Stones but promising signs at least for Dyche’s men.
32 mins: City 2-0 Burnley
This stat will shock no one as it’s revealed City have made 262 passes to Burnley’s 65.
29 mins: City 2-0 Burnley
Dias loses the ball near the halfway line, Burnley steal it and work it down the left flank, the cross cannot find Wood, but a glimpse of hope for the visitors.
25 mins: City 2-0 Burnley
The ball is in the net again BUT it’s ruled offside. It would have been a very scrappy goal – definitely not one to rewind and watch again. Mahrez sent his cross towards the back post and Jesus looked to head home, but the ball hit against Torres and he was in an offside position. The keeper should have stopped it but a replay confirms the assistant ref made the right call.
23 mins: City 2-0 Burnley
De Bruyne sees Peacock-Farrell creeping out off his line and has a go from 40 yards out on the right flank. The keeper just gets back and tips over the bar.
As it’s De Bruyne I’ll say he definitely meant it.
GOOOOOOAAAAAALLLL! City 2-0 Burnley
Poor goal from Burnley’s point of view, fabulous from the hosts’ point of view.
Mahrez gets the ball on the byline, Mee inexplicablyallows him inside on to his dangerous left boot, the Algerian wriggles free from the attention of the Burnley backline and fires in from close range.
20 mins: City 1-0 Burnley
The ball comes to Stones on the edge of the box from a City corner and the defender shoots but it is blocked by Mee. City are seeing a lot of the ball but haven’t created a clearcut chance over the past 10 minutes. Burnley are conceding space, dropping deep and allowing City the ball. They seem happy for the ball to go wide and to they defend the crosses.
15 mins: City 1-0 Burnley
Tarkowski intercepts well from a Gundogan pass. De Bruyne has a free role and is popping up all over the pitch, Burnley are defending tenaciously and doing well to cut off any danger.
12 mins: City 1-0 Burnley
Burnley are settling down, they go long but cannot pick up the secondary ball, their midfield need to win those battles if they are to get back into the match.
8 mins: City 1-0 Burnley
Burnley are up against it at the moment. Mahrez again makes a dangerous central run in behind the backline, he just cannot find Jesus with the next pass. It’s looking good for City they look dangerous when they have the ball, rather than predictable and ponderous, which they have done at times this season.
GOOOOAAAALLL!!! City 1-0 Burnley
Great goal – movement, awareness and clinical finishing all wrapped up in a slick move – delightful.
Burnley lose the ball on the halfway line, the City attack move at pace playing a series of one touch passes, it finds its way to De Bruyne who plays in Mahrez and the Algerian slots home.
That’s the City that terrorised defences last season, can they keep it up?
4 mins: City 0-0 Burnley
Gundogan plays in Torres just inside the box, he has acres of space but fires over the bar. He should have done better. Good movement by Jesus, who needs a good game, created the space for the Spaniard.
2 mins: City 0-0 Burnley
Mahrez wins a free-kick close to the byline. The hosts cannot create anything from the resulting free-kick as Tarkowski heads clear. Dyche will be pleased to see him and Mee back in defence together. You get the feeling a lot will depend on how that pair perform this afternoon.
1 min: City 0-0 Burnley
From the start it’s clear Burnley’s front three are pressing right up on the City defence. They have not come here to just to defend.
We’re ready to go
After a minute’s applause for the great Diego Maradona – who is grandfather to Aguero’s son – we’re about to start.
By the looks of it Burnley have come here not to just sit back and defended with Rodriguez, Wood and Barnes all starting they will look to expose what has been, so far this season, a less than solid City backline.
Pep’s problems, ‘blame me’
Here’s what Luke Edwards had to write about Guardiola’s trials.
“Pep Guardiola remains convinced Manchester City can do something special this season as he urged critics to blame him for the team’s inconsistent start to the campaign as well as their lack of goals.”
Burnley’s news is that…
…they could soon have new owners.
ALK Capital are moving closer to finalising a deal to buy the club – a takeover by the American sports investment company could be concluded before Christmas.
Talks are apparently at an advanced after months of negotiations and an extensive due diligence process.
Egyptian entrepreneur Mohamed Sayed Zein Elkashashy and Chris Farnell, a Cheshire-based sports lawyer, have also been vying for ownership of Burnley. However, ALK appear to be in pole position to acquire Garlick’s majority 49.24 per cent shareholding and John Banaszkiewicz’s 28.2 per cent stake in the Premier League club.
So what’s gone wrong at the Etihad?
Our very own James Ducker has pinpointed five things Pep needs to address to turn things around.
Foden itching for Silva role.
Rodri is no Fernandinho.
Bernardo Silva needs to find form.
There’s a lack of width.
There’s no substitute for Sergio Aguero.
Read the full, informative piece here.
…the big news for City fans is that Foden and Sterling start on the bench and Aguero is deemed not even fit to do that. The side has been struggling for goals (it seems so strange writing that…) and Guardiola lines up with an attacking force of Mahrez, De Bruyne, Torres and Jesus. Will they be the ones to get City back on track to scaring the life out of opposition defences?
Hello and welcome
This time last year Manchester City at home against side not just in the bottom half of the table but flirting with the relegation zone tended to mean one thing: sit back, put your feet up and watch a flood of goals. City under Pep Guardiola against any side showing weakness, under pressure and in need of points have been much like like a hungry lion picking off a weak, injured gazelle – clinical and merciless.
This year, however, is different and not just for the obvious reasons of there being no crowds, some ridiculous results and a Jose Mourinho seemingly happy with life. No, this campaign is remarkable for the fact that City look goal shy. Seemingly out of nowhere Pep’s players have gone from blood-thirsty killers in front of goal to meek, lumbering also-rans.
This campaign has seen City not manage to score more than one goal in any of their past six Premier League matches, and their 12-point tally is their lowest after eight matches since the 2008-09 season. Their goal count of 11 is the fewest times they’ve found the back of the net in 14 years. They lie 13th in the table and come into the match on the back of a 2-0 defeat to Tottenham, looking a far cry from the side that could bend any match to their attacking will and virtually end a contest before half-time.
In need of a pick-me-up victory you could argue that Guardiola’s side, at home, are up against the perfect opponents. Burnley have spent most of the season in the bottom three, have only one win to their name and have earned just two points from four away matches.
But this being 2020, and there being a perennial need to take some sort of positive from a host of negatives then Clarets fans can grab some crumbs of comfort from the fact that the side can equal the club’s top-flight record of three successive away cleansheets today, a feat achieved most recently in 1955.
So, if the season’s stats are anything to go by we should expect a low-scoring match with City just edging it. That doesn’t inspire any neutrals wanting to see a goal-fest but Pep Guardiola’s side still oozes attacking flair and class and there is a feeling that the team will click sooner rather than later.
Stay here to find out if they do and for all the pre-match news and analysis.
Source: The Telegraph Travels