Manchester City produced a thoroughly dominant performance to beat Newcastle 2-0 courtesy of goals from Ilkay Gundogan and Ferran Torres.
Man City‘s Raheem Sterling posed an threat in the opening stages with his running in behind the Newcastle defence, and in the 15th minute, Joao Cancelo eventually worked it through the gap to the England international who squared the ball to Ilkay Gundogan who tucked the ball home from 10 yards.
City enjoyed a totally dominant performance in the first half, and started the second in much the same fashion, and 10 minutes after the restart they had the second goal that their dominance deserved.
A cross from the impressive Cancelo was intercepted by Federico Fernandez, though it fell perfectly to Ferran Torres who finished into the bottom corner with ease for his seventh goal of the season, in all competitions.
Newcastle ‘keeper Karl Darlow made an excellent save to prevent substitute Sergio Aguero making it three, as City saw out a comfortable win and registered yet another clean sheet along the way.
13 – Manchester City have kept their 13th clean sheet of the campaign, more than any other team within the top five European leagues this season. Pragmatism.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 26, 2020
At times this season, Pep Guardiola has been critical of his side’s performance levels, but the Catalan was happy with their ‘tempo’ and ‘perfect’ positional play that they produced on a rain-soaked night in East Manchester.
“A tough game, the weather conditions and the opponent who we have struggled to score against,” he told BT Sport.
“That is the tempo we need to play. Today our positional game was perfect, unfortunately, we could not score more goals but it is a good result and three more points.
“We cannot think much, the schedule is a game every three days. The players are committed and focused.
“We are far away from the top, last week we were 10th in the table, all the season is up and down. There are weird results for everyone, this season you have to be calm in the good and the bad moments.”
The result sees Man City move back up to fifth, and next up for Guardiola’s side is an away trip to face second-placed Everton on Monday evening.