While Manchester City may have faced a real potential banana peel at lunchtime on Saturday, the Sky Blues secured a well deserved 2-0 win over Newcastle.
Briefly reducing Arsenal’s buffer at the top of the Premier League table to just two points, it was Phil Foden and Bernardo Silva who led City to their third successive home win when Guardiola’s midfield duo scored on either side of the halftime break.
While Guardiola’s team may have been heartbroken as they had to watch the Gunners snatch a standout last-gasp winner against Bournemouth later in the day, the former Barcelona boss must be delighted with a tough performance here.
Saturday’s 2-0 win just trying to keep pressure on the high-flying Arsenal could also prove to be a costly blow to Newcastle’s quest to claim a top-four spot this season.
After suffering a 2-0 defeat to Manchester United last weekend when they traveled to Wembley for this year’s EFL Cup final, the Magpies have now lost in each of their last three matches against Premier League rivals.
During a pleasant meeting with Etihad at lunchtime on Saturday, we went over the key topics for discussion.
The city expands on their Etihad romp
Starting his Champions League play-off adventure on February 22 with a 1-1 draw away to RB Leipzig, Guardiola has had a headache over his team’s troubling inconsistencies away from the Etihad.
However, despite the reigning Premier League champions still being able to end the weekend chasing a five-point gap, the former Barcelona boss has only seen his side expand on the purple spot on home soil.
Beating a Newcastle team still dreaming of a chance to claim the famous top four ticket, the Sky Blues have won each of their six Etihad domestic fixtures since the opening of the New Year.
With this series marked by their outstanding second-half comeback against Tottenham Hotspur on 19 January, when they ultimately won 4-2, Guardiola’s superstars have also suffered just one defeat in front of their fans this season. .
With 17 strikes in a six-match winning streak at Etihad and underlining their dominance at Saturday lunchtime, City will now be desperate to find a similar level away from Etihad.
Foden is back on top
While Foden may have been one of the main talking points as England reached the World Cup quarter-finals in the winter, Manchester City’s homegrown superstar has pretty much been on the sidelines in recent weeks.
However, despite Foden being able to publicly claim City’s 3-0 FA Cup victory over Bristol City earlier in the week, it looks like the 22-year-old is back on his teasing best.
When Guardiola made it clear that the English ace was playing a key role in City’s quest to defend their Premier League crown this season, Foden certainly put on an outstanding performance, opening the scoring after just 15 minutes.
Now, starting in each of City’s last four matches across all formats, the international with 22 caps has also gained a clinical advantage.
Apart from an FA Cup double away to Ashton Gate a few days ago, Foden has now scored four goals in just his last three matches in the past week.
Newcastle’s troubles after the World Cup continue
While Newcastle may have received a string of applause under Eddie Howe before heading off to the World Cup winter break, the Magpies have fallen somewhat to the ground over the past couple of months.
Having suffered heartbreak in the EFL Cup against Manchester United last weekend when they made their first trip to Wembley in 24 years, Howe’s side have now lost every one of their last three meetings against Premier League rivals – so far it’s theirs. worst episode of the season.
While Newcastle may have marked their comeback after the winter break by aiming for the famous Champions League ticket, the former Bournemouth boss has notably seen his team clinch their only victory in their previous eight top-flight appearances.
With this streak tied to a 3-0 win over Leicester on Boxing Day, the Magpies also showed some prolonged trouble in the final third.
Now facing what seems to be a real uphill battle in their quest to claim a place in the top four, Newcastle have now been on the losing end of each of their previous three defeats in a row.
Manchester: Ederson, Walker, Akanji, Diaz, Ake, Rodri, Gundogan, Foden, De Bruyne, Grealish, Haaland
Newcastle: Pope, Trippierl Lascelles, Botman, Burn, Jolinton, Guimarães, Longstaff, Almiron, Wilson, Gordon
Subscriptions: Isak, Target, Willock, Saint-Maximin, Murphy
Goals: Foden (15′), Silva (67′)
Yellow cards: Manchester City: Haaland, Ake – Newcastle: Joelinton, Bern, Lascelles
Red cards: N/A
Judge: Simon Hooper