Phil Foden

AP Photo/Rui Vieira

Man City loses, advanced to UCL quarters on aggregate

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  • City advances to 2nd quarterfinal in 3 years
  • First home loss since Dec. 2016
  • Jesus scores lone City goal

Mohamed Elyounoussi and Michael Lang scored for Basel, who became just the fourth team to beat Man City over 90 minutes this season, but the Premier League hosts advanced to the UEFA Champions League Final with a 5-2 win on aggregate at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday.

Gabriel Jesus scored Man City’s lone goal in the 2-1 loss, as City goes onto the UCL quarterfinals after a year away from the final eight.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

City handed a start to 17-year-old Phil Foden and brought in 18-year-old Brahim Diaz after 66 minutes

Jesus may’ve thought Bernardo Silva‘s pass would find him near the back post, but it’s unlikely he expected Man City’s opener to come through not one but two defenders’ legs.

Leroy Sane drove across the heart of the Basel defensive third to find Silva, and the Portuguese playmaker sent a cross back post that Jesus tapped in for 1-0.

Basel leveled the leg at one through the young Norwegian-Moroccan attacker Elyounoussi, a name you’ll likely hear in the transfer rumor mill soon.

Elyounoussi took the ball in the center of the pitch and rifled his shot past Claudio Bravo.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Manchester City 5-1 Leicester City: Aguero, KDB on fire

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  • Sterling scores very early
  • Vardy nabs 13th PL goal
  • Aguero scores four
  • De Bruyne assists three

Sergio Aguero put an exclamation point on a thrilling night with a glorious fourth goal as Manchester City scored in the first three minutes of each half to beat Leicester City 5-1 on Saturday at the Etihad Stadium.

Kevin De Bruyne pulled the strings for goals by Raheem Sterling and two of Sergio Aguero’s four.

Man City’s point total means it could lose every remaining league match and finish no lower than sixth. City has 72 points and a 16-point lead on Man Utd, who plays Sunday.

Jamie Vardy scored for Leicester, making him the first player in league history to score against Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, and Tottenham Hotspur in the same season.

The Foxes remains eighth with 35 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Sterling proved his confidence was fine despite a brutal late miss against Burnley, meeting Kevin De Bruyne’s cross for a third minute goal inside the six-yard box.

A Christian Fuchs stop on Sergio Aguero brought a counter attack for Leicester, and Vardy moved past an Ilkay Gundogan slide tackle to shoot past a continually backing off Aymeric Laporte and behind Ederson. 1-1, 25′.

Sterling dove to win a dangerous free kickoff Wilfred Ndidi in the 36th minute, but a leaping Nicolas Otamendi could not meet De Bruyne’s long range pass.

The goal scorer fooled Kasper Schmeichel on a dribble inside the six, but a sliding Aleksandar Dragovic meant Sterling won a corner kick, not a brace.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

It took less than three minutes of the second half for De Bruyne to work more magic, putting together a brilliant team goal for Aguero with Oleksandar Zinchenko and Sterling.

De Bruyne slipped Aguero through for another within 10 minutes, continuing his almost certain PL Player of the Year campaign.

Schmeichel would later give the ball to Aguero inside the 18 to complete another hat trick for one of the PL’s all-time greats.

And Aguero made it four for him and five for his side when he took a feed from Phil Foden and lashed a beauty off the underside of the bar.

League Cup semifinal preview: Manchester City vs. Bristol City

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Manchester City looks for a berth in the first Cup final of the English calendar as they host Championship side Bristol City in the first leg of the EFL Cup semifinals at 2:45 p.m. ET from the Etihad.

It remains to be seen how seriously Pep Guardiola will take this match given recent injuries that have sapped his squad of its depth through the festive schedule. However, the Manchester City boss has suggested he will name a strong side, telling fans that trophies of any kind will satisfy his craving.

While Gabriel Jesus and Phil Foden are unquestionably ruled out with long-term injuries for the hosts, the most interesting situation to watch will be that of Kevin De Bruyne. The Belgian was stretchered off in an air cast on New Year’s Eve after a heavy challenge by Jason Puncheon, but made a miraculous recovery to start just two days later against Watford. That decision was questioned as de Bruyne was withdrawn after 79 minutes at the Etihad in obvious discomfort. It will be interesting to see if Guardiola again risks his Player of the Year candidate or if he gets a rest 12-day rest until their next Premier League match against Liverpool on Sunday.

Bristol City, meanwhile, has taken down four Premier League sides in their stunning EFL Cup run, knocking Watford, Stoke City, Crystal Palace, and Manchester United all out of the competition. They will be without young midfielder Callum O’Dowda who played the full 90 minutes in four of their five EFL Cup matches, but went down with a serious ankle injury in late November.

The visitors currently sit fourth in the Championship table, but have lost two league games in a row, a worrying sign after losing just one match since late October. They were blasted by Aston Villa on the road by a cringe-worthy 5-0 scoreline last time out. Nevertheless, they have thus far not been intimidated by Premier League opposition in the Cup, taking an attacking mentality to all their Cup matches to date.

What they’re saying

Pep Guardiola on fixture congestion: “We are going to try to win the game, take the best result possible, then go to Bristol away with the best result – that’s the only way I know. The important thing is to be involved in all competitions and we are there as well as other teams. Chelsea are in the same position, they’re in them all.”

Bristol City manager Lee Johnson on playing Man City: “The players have been exceptional so far,” said Bristol City boss Lee Johnson. The effort they’ve demonstrated to beat four Premier League teams en route has been phenomenal. Now they find themselves in the semi-finals of a major cup competition and facing the best team in the country right now. The concentration levels it will take to ensure we don’t get infiltrated in our back-line will be huge. In saying that, I do believe in the qualities in our squad and the challenge is to make sure we play our game.”

Premier League Preview: Manchester City vs. Bournemouth

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  • Manchester City will be without midfielder Phil Foden, while there are doubts over both Vincent Kompany and David Silva.
  • AFC Bournemouth has injury concerns regarding Jermain Defoe (ankle), Harry Arter and Charlie Daniels. Joshua King (hamstring) is a doubt, but Callum Wilson is available.
  • Manchester City has won nine and lost none of their 11 previous league matches against AFC Bournemouth (D2), winning all five in the Premier League. 
  • AFC Bournemouth has never won a match in Manchester against either City or United in 11 previous attempts in all competitions (W0 D2 L9).

Manchester City takes its 16-match run of victories back to the Etihad Stadium this Saturday as the Citizens host Eddie Howe and Bournemouth (Watch live, 10:00 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and

[MORE: Top Premier League storylines — Week 19]

Pep Guardiola‘s side has scored four goals in each of its last two games, including a 4-1 demolition last week against Tottenham at home as Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and Raheem Sterling are running riot. Even with a mostly second-string side on Tuesday, Man City advanced on penalty kicks past Leicester City in the Carabao Cup.

Bournemouth meanwhile are hovering over the relegation zone, with no wins in its last six matches along with getting knocked out of the Carabao Cup this past week.

On paper, Manchester City is the heavy favorites, but it’s never smart to count out an Eddie Howe-coached team.

What they’re saying

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola on his side’s last game against Bourmenouth, which started the 16-game winning streak: “It was so important because we drew the game before against Everton at home. Nobody expected then that we would win 16 games in a row in that moment. It was so important because after that came the international break and after that came the game against Liverpool. It was so important, but so was the one against Southampton in the last second. When you are able to win a lot of games, some you win because you played much better and are able to win comfortably, in terms of the result. The other games you have to win in that situation. You cannot win all 16 games with a big gap of goals. We were lucky in that moment so hopefully tomorrow we can make a good game.”

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe on facing Man City: “We have to believe, I always maintain that and we believe we can. Saying that it will be incredibly difficult. We will need to be defensively very good considering the attacking players they have, but as importantly we will need a bit of luck. In recent games we’ve played well but not always got what we deserved. That includes the game at Chelsea on Wednesday night.”

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Prediction: Manchester City is showing no signs of slowing down as we enter the festive period of matches and Saturday should be no different. Bournemouth will likely put up a fight but won’t have the answers for De Bruyne, Silva, Aguero and co. Manchester City 4-0 Bournemouth

Pep pumped up as kids get away win

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Pep Guardiola says don’t even think about a quadruple — “Forget about it. That is not going to happen.” — but the fact remains a double is nearly on the doorstep.

Already unbeaten in league play with an 11-point lead on the field, Manchester City is now two round wins from a League Cup title following a quarterfinal win over Leicester City in penalty kicks.

[ RECAP: Leicester 1-1 (3-4 PKs) Man City ]

City did the job despite starting a bunch of kids and subbing in a few more. Oleksandr Zinchenko was impressive in the midfield, one of a few irregular starters including Tosin Adarabioyo, Brahim Diaz, and Phil Foden. Tom Dele-Bashiru and Lukas Nmecha subbed into the match, with the latter converting a penalty.

It’s all about trusting the kids — along with some steely vets in Yaya Toure and Ilkay Gundogan — and those youngsters probably should’ve won in regulation. Referee Bobby Madley gave a penalty to Demarai Gray for a very soft run-in with Kyle Walker in the sixth of eight minutes of stoppage time (in a 1-0 game where the goal came in the first half!).

Guardiola loved it, dancing on the field and gesticulating toward the visiting support. The kids had done it on the road.

From the BBC:

“I’m so happy. A lot of young players played. I’m so happy for all the players. The way we had to react was not easy, we were tired, we had a lot of young players, Danilo was playing at centre-back for the first time in his life. It’s not easy because Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez were there.

“What I liked the most is how we reacted and overcame that situation. It’s a good indication for the future. They showed me very good things. How you react is important and there were no complaints from the players in extra time about how it was unfair that they had scored a late goal.”

The Danilo comment shows another wise play by Guardiola who, in an emergency, has now taken another player and earned him experience against good competition at multiple positions.

It’s hard not to glow about Man City right now. Even those who want to rip Guardiola for only coaching big budget teams can’t say much about a win like Tuesday’s at the King Power Stadium.