Belfast Telegraph

Two-goal Aguero simply stunning, says Man City boss Guardiola

Man City 5 - Huddersfield 1

By Andy Hampson

Sergio Aguero struck twice to the delight of boss Pep Guardiola as Manchester City came from behind to ease into the FA Cup quarter-finals with a 5-1 win over Sky Bet Championship Huddersfield.

A mistake by goalkeeper Claudio Bravo allowed former City youngster Harry Bunn to fire the Terriers into a surprise early lead at the Etihad Stadium but the hosts roared back with three goals before half-time.

Leroy Sane equalised before an Aguero penalty and Pablo Zabaleta effort put Guardiola's men firmly in command. Aguero and sub Kelechi Iheanacho completed the job in the second half.

City go to Middlesbrough on Saturday week for a place in the semi-finals while Huddersfield, whose manager David Wagner was beginning a two-match touchline ban, can focus on their promotion challenge.

Guardiola said: "Even in the moment (when we conceded) we were playing quite good, we made good things against a good team.

"We are happy because we're in the quarter-finals. I was impressed with Huddersfield in both halves - they have good quality players. But okay - we knew how tough it could be.

"It's the best Sergio Aguero ever. Today the performance was amazing. The runs were at the right moment and the right tempo. His performance was top - the same with Claudio Bravo, his performance with the foot helped us build up."

While Wagner made nine changes, Guardiola made clear his determination to progress by naming a strong side. City were soon on the front foot as Sane cracked a shot against a post within four minutes.

But, as seen repeatedly in last week's exhilarating Champions League game against Monaco, City can be vulnerable at the back when sides attack them with pace.

The Terriers did just that and snatched a surprise lead after seven minutes. Philip Billing flicked the ball into the path of Bunn, who took a touch and then lashed a low left-foot shot underneath the slow-to-react Bravo's body.

It was a horror moment for the much-maligned Chilean goalkeeper on his return to the side after sitting out five of the previous six games.

It was also potentially uncomfortable for Guardiola, who has backed the keeper.

The equaliser came on the half-hour and City won the game with two more goals in what was a blistering eight-minute spell.

Raheem Sterling teed-up Sane for the leveller and Jon Gorenc Stankovic bundled over Nicolas Otamendi for a penalty. Aguero made no mistake from the spot.

Aguero made it 4-1 after the break and he went off only for his replacement Iheanacho to add a fifth goal for City in time added on.

Belfast Telegraph

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