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Raheem Sterling scored a pair of goals as Manchester City eased past Burnley 3-0 in the Round of 16 of the Carabao Cup.
The Blues looked more like themselves controlling the match from start to finish.
It took the Citizens 35 minutes to find the breakthrough when Aymeric Laporte played a clever ball inside the Burnley right-back.
Benjamin Mendy’s low cross found Sterling for a tap-in from eight yards out.
Four minutes later City doubled their advantage when Cole Palmer won possession on the halfway line.
De Bruyne then took over, laying a great ball to Ferran Torres whose low cross found Sterling.
The Englishman had time to control the cross and find the bottom right corner.
Torres then put the game to bed in the 65th minute after Marhrez’s low pass was helped on by Sterling.
The Spaniard was able to slot it home past Bailey Peacock-Farrell to make it 3-0.
City boss Pep Guardiola surprised many by playing his regulars including De Bruyne, Walker, Mahrez, and Sterling.
There were four changes from Saturday’s humiliating 5-2 defeat to Leicester.
Ferran Torres got his first goal as a member of Manchester City adding an assist as well.
American goalkeeper Zack Steffen got his first clean sheet for his new club.
He stopped both efforts he faced in what was a fairly quiet evening.
Aymeric Laporte made his first start of the season for City since testing positive for COVID a few weeks ago.
Bernardo Silva made his first appearance this season for the Citizens, replacing in the 64th minute.
Cole Palmer got his first start for the senior squad.
Man City’s midfield looked like their old selves with 62% possession and an 88% pass accuracy.
De Bruyne was impressive, creating chance after chance in the first half while pulling the strings for the Blues.
Ferran Torres played some sublime balls all game long.
It was by far his best performance for the Blues to date.
Cole Palmer was another player who made his presence felt tonight.
The 18-year-old linked up effectively all game with De Bruyne, looking tidy and assured.
He came close to setting up Sterling for a hat-trick on a couple of occasions but his positional play and awareness on the pitch were outstanding.
Man of the Match
Raheem Sterling continued his hot streak of late with a pair of goals and an assist.
Since the start of last season, Raheem Sterling has netted 33 goals for the Blues; that’s the most of any Premier League player in that period.
He’s scored 13 goals in his last 17 matches.
City will look to get back in the win column when their EPL season resumes Saturday against Leeds United at Elland Road.
Kickoff is scheduled for 5:30 pm.
City will face Arsenal in the quarter-finals.
The quarter-finals will take place the week before Christmas. (JSL)