Mens Team

Foden makes his mark, ton-up Raheem

SEVEN UP: Manchester City were at our ruthless best in our FA Cup win over Rotherham
Manchester City produced a ruthless display to overwhelm Rotherham 7-0 in Sunday’s FA Cup third round clash. Here we examine the game's major talking points...

1Foden makes his mark

It felt like a hugely symbolic and important moment when Phil Foden scored to register his first senior goal at the Etihad.

As Phil admitted afterwards, it may not have been the most aesthetically pleasing goal he will ever score, but that didn’t deter from the sheer joy on his face.

READ: Phil Foden | Success in the FA Cup would be special

WATCH: Phil Foden | City 2024

The strike served as a fitting reward for another impressive all-round performance from the teenager who revelled in the spaces afforded to him by Rotherham.

And at just 18 years of age and with a new long-term contract signed and sealed last month, it will surely stand as the first of many special Foden moments at the Etihad.

2Ton-up Raheem...

Raheem Sterling was again at his irresistible best against the Millers, opening the scoring with a smart finish and also assisting for Gabriel Jesus’s strike.

It speaks volumes for the all-round impact of the 24-year-old that his efforts yesterday brought up another notable tally for him.

WATCH: City 7-0 Rotherham: Extended highlights

For it meant Sterling has now been directly involved in 100 goals in 167 appearances for City in all competitions since joining the Club in 2015, scoring 55 goals and assisting 45.

Those impressive statistics merely serve to further confirm that the winger is in the form of his life.

3Clean sheet

We may have scored seven goals but arguably Pep Guardiola will have gleaned just as much satisfaction from a shut-out.

It was our first clean sheet after our defence had been breached at least once in our previous seven games.

READ: Pep Guardiola hails 'incredible' De Bruyne

WATCH: Philippe Sandler | City debut was a magic moment

And with the season now very much entering the business end, with every game taking on added significance, maintaining that water-tight defence will be key.

So it was heartening to see the Blues re-deploy our lock and key at the back. Long may it continue.

4Depth charge

It says everything about the quality of Guardiola’s squad that, though we made eight changes from the team that beat Liverpool, there was still a formidable look to the starting line-up.

Kevin De Bruyne, Kyle Walker, Nicolas Otamendi and Ilkay Gundogan to name just a few, all produced hugely impressive individual performances as the battle for a first-team starting spot intensifies.

WATCH: City 2-1 Liverpool: How the game was won

Guardiola has stated on several occasions that with such an intensive schedule, every one of his squad members will have vital roles to play between now and the end of the season.

On yesterday’s encouraging evidence whoever Pep selects from here on in won’t let him down

5Shared goals

No Sergio Aguero, no problem.

Our all-time record goalscorer may have been been absent yesterday but the goals still kept on coming for the Blues.

Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden, Gabriel Jesus, Riyad Mahrez, Nicolas Otamendi and Leroy Sane all found the target to once re-emphasise that City carry a potent goal-threat throughout our ranks.

READ: Man City to face Watford in Womens' FA Cup

WATCH: Man City 2-1 Liverpool  | Tunnel Cam

That’s not forgetting the goal-getting capabilities of Kevin De Bruyne, who did everything but find the net yesterday and David Silva who was afforded a timely breather against the Millers.

It’s a scenario most managers would give their right arm for – and should fill Blues with huge confidence ahead of Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg against Burton.

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