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Sunderland 0-2 Man City: Talking Points

GET IN: The Blues celebrate Aguero's opener at the Stadium of Light.

GET IN: The Blues celebrate Aguero's opener at the Stadium of Light.

Manchester City Club Journalist Rob Pollard picks out the big talking points from City's impressive Premier League victory over Sunderland.

Yet another Silva masterclass

He's been City's most consistent player for weeks and David Silva delivered yet another masterclass at the Stadium of Light. 

 

He played a part in City’s first - an exceptional team goal that owed much to Yaya Toure’s driving run - and laid on the second for Leroy Sane with a wonderfully weighted ball into the German’s path. It was the 62nd assist he’s registered in the Premier League since he made his debut in 2010, more than any other player in that period.

 

City struggled to find their rhythm in the first half, with Sunderland offering stubborn resistance – but the second period saw them produce perhaps their best passing display since winning their opening 10 games of the season in a blaze of attacking quality.

 

City attempted 716 passes, which is more than in any other Premier League game under Pep Guardiola, with only 75 of them failing to find their intended target.

 

Silva was at the heart of it all. He attempted 88 passes throughout the game and completed a remarkable 94 percent of them. He also covered 12.23km, which is more than any other player on the pitch.

 

He’s mixing industry and artistry, orchestrating City’s best moves with dazzling quality. He’s arguably the best player in the English top flight right now.

 

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Sane a frightening talent

It's difficult not to slip into hyperbole when discussing Leroy Sane's ability but on the evidence of what we have seen since his display against Arsenal back in December, a game in which something ‘clicked’ for the 21-year-old, he is a young footballer with world-class potential. 

 

It's been a long time since we've seen such an exciting prospect. Pace, strength, the ability to defenders - he has everything needed to be one of the game’s most devastating wingers. 

 

Having failed to score in his first 12 games for City, he’s bagged six in his last 10 games in all competitions, with his goal at Sunderland, a fine finish that left Jordan Pickford with no chance, his first away goal in the Premier League, his last six have coming from just eight shots on target.

 

His confidence is growing and City have in their midst a potential star of world football.

City tightening up at the back

Perhaps the most remarkable stat to emerge from the game was this: City have kept five consecutive clean sheets away from home for the first time in their history.

 

Willy Caballero has now kept five clean sheets in his last seven matches and City suddenly have a much tighter backline. 

 

And it wasn't just the back four's robustness that caught the eye. John Stones and Aleksander Kolarov were brave in possession, continually stepping into midfield and breaking the lines in order to start purposeful attacks. 

 

That, as much as the clean sheet, will have made Pep Guardiola happy. 

 

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Sterling season

It wasn’t Raheem Sterling’s finest performance of 2016/17 – but he registered another assist and has now been directly involved in 28 goals for City this season (nine goals and 19 assists).

 

This was also his 150th Premier League game. Only three players – Wayne Rooney, James Milner and Cesc Fabregas - reached that figure at a younger age.

 

It’s been a remarkable campaign for a player with so much improving still to do.

Aguero reaches another milestone

Sergio Aguero’s goal not only showcased his brilliant movement inside the box, it also saw him become the 21st player in Premier League history to score 50 away goals.

 

Having become City’s record post-war FA Cup goalscorer with a double against Huddersfield on Wednesday, it’s been quite a week for the Argentine.

 

He looks razor sharp and back to his lethal best and has reminded everybody he is the finest finisher in English football. 

What the Media Says

Sane, Silva and Aguero lauded after Sunderland win

HIGH FIVE: David and Gael greet City's second goalscorer.

With Man City’s victory over Sunderland on Sunday still fresh in everyone’s minds as they wake up to start a new week, the headlines focus on what we learned at the Stadium of Light.

Leroy Sane, David Silva and Sergio Aguero are all praised following City's Premier League victory over Sunderland.

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