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Feb 17, 2013

Aguero carries City into FA Cup quarters

Sergio Aguero struck twice as Manchester City kept its season alive by breezing into the FA Cup quarterfinals with a 4-0 win over Leeds.

The Championship side was no match for the Barclays Premier League champion, which responded to last week's title setback with a dominant display at the Etihad Stadium.

Yaya Toure began the procession early on before Aguero added a penalty and a fine finish either side of a close-range Carlos Tevez effort.

Angered by last week's dismal loss at Southampton, Roberto Mancini kept his word and made six changes, with Joe Hart rested allowing deputy Costel Pantilimon an opportunity. The only Leeds player to make his mark early on was former City midfielder Michael Brown, who was constantly at the heels of his opponents and looking to irritate.

Such was City's clear superiority it came as no surprise when they opened the scoring with just under five minutes gone. David Silva was involved in a neat move before Yaya Toure exchanged passes with Tevez on the edge of the box and then expertly took the ball round Jamie Ashdown.

City went back on the attack and cut Leeds open with ease as Pablo Zabaleta released fellow Argentinian Aguero and another compatriot in Tevez fired narrowly wide. It seemed the Leeds defence could not cope with Aguero and Tom Lees gave him the opportunity to double the lead when he pulled him back in the area.

Aguero finished emphatically from the spot and City began to stroke the ball around with even greater confidence. Leeds showed little bite and, when they did, it came some while later after Brown clipped Tevez.

Aleksandar Kolarov's free-kick was deflected into the side-netting and Javi Garcia got forward to glance a header across goal from a corner. Leeds belatedly tested Pantilimon when Ross McCormack forced the Romanian to palm away a free kick in the last minute of the first half.

Leeds was left reeling once again as Aguero combined with Silva and raced into the box before clipping a ball across goal for Tevez to volley in from close range. Jack Rodwell came off the City bench and almost made an immediate impact as he headed onto the crossbar after Ashdown had parried a Yaya Toure shot.

The fourth City goal came after 74 minutes as Silva split the Leeds defense with a superb pass and Aguero turned and waited for the optimum moment to curl past Ashdown. Another City substitute, Edin Dzeko, brought a good low save out of Ashdown as City cantered to victory.

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