Review and Player Ratings as Cancelo shines and Haaland scores again – Man City 4-0 Southampton
After another dominant home display in midweek against FC Copenhagen and the derby victory last Sunday, Manchester City carried on their impressive form with a 4-0 win at the Etihad against Southampton.
Superb goals from Joao Cancelo, Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez and obviously, Erling Haaland saw the Blues take home all three points and climb back onto the top of the Premier League table, for now.
With English trio John Stones, Kyle Walker and Kalvin Phillips all injured, Pep Guardiola opted for the defensive partnership of Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake, with Rodri returning to his holding midfield position in place of Ilkay Gundogan. Manuel Akanji started at right-back with Cancelo on the left.
Surprisingly, Jack Grealish made way for Riyad Mahrez despite his splendid run of games. Bernardo Silva and Kevin De Bruyne completed the midfield, with Phil Foden and Erling Haaland in the frontline.
14 minutes in, Haaland came ever so close to opening the scoring. City academy graduate, Foden played through a delicious ball from the left-hand side and with Norwegian glaring down on goal, everyone inside the Etihad expected the net to burst. However, that wasn’t the case. The striker’s right-footed effort zipped past Bazuna but only managed to hit the inside of the left post.
It wasn’t long after City took the lead, five minutes to be precise. Cancelo picked the ball up around 20-yards from goal and turned James Ward-Prowse inside out to line up a crisp left-footed strike into the back of the Southampton net.
A few impressive blocks and saves later, Foden added a sensational second for the Blues. De Bruyne exploded forward, through the heart of the visitor's defence and slipped a ball through to Foden, who smartly chipped the ball over a hopeless Bazuna.
De Bruyne has now overtaken David Silva as the club's leading assist provider in the Premier League.
Not long after half-time, the hosts grabbed a third. Rodri collected the ball from deep and supplied a perfect ball over the Southampton defence toward Mahrez. City's No.26 produced a fantastic first-time volley into the far corner for his first Premier League goal of the season.
Then, finally, Haaland grabbed his customary goal. A beautiful bit of play between De Bruyne and Cancelo ended up with the left-back on the byline, where he drilled in a low ball for Haaland to smash under Bazuna's legs. That's his 15th league goal, which matches the club's top Premier League scorer last season in De Bruyne. It's the 8th of October.
Ederson - 7
Cancelo - 9
Akanji - 7
Dias - 7
Ake - 7
Rodri - 8.5
Bernardo Silva - 7
De Bruyne - 7
Mahrez - 7.5
Haaland - 8
Foden - 8.5
Substitues: Grealish - 7, Alvarez - 6, Palmer - 7.5, Gomez - 7, and Lewis - N/A
What's next for Manchester City?
The next few weeks are jam-packed for Guardiola's men. A trip to Denmark is on the cards ahead of this Tuesday, with a fixture against Liverpool at Anfield to follow next weekend. Following that, seven more games, at least, will take place before the World Cup in Qatar.
Written by: @TomCayless_
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