Stoke 1-4 Manchester City: Sergio Aguero and Nolito at the double to maintain Pep Guardiola’s perfect start

21 Aug

Sergio Aguero and Nolito both scored twice as Manchester City romped past Stoke on Saturday lunchtime to extend their winning start to the season.

Aguero hit a first-half double at the Bet365 Stadium – his fifth and sixth goals in just three games – to put City 2-0 ahead at half-time.

Bojan reduced the deficit for Stoke shortly after the break, but substitute Nolito netted in quick succession late on to put the match out of sight.

It is a third win for City in all competitions under Pep Guardiola, who again left Joe Hart out of his starting line-up.

Having faced Sunderland at home in their Premier League opener and Steaua Bucharest in a Champions League qualifier in midweek, this represented the toughest test of Guardiola’s City career to date.

But they came through it with flying colours, with Aguero again proving influential.

The 28-year-old missed two penalties in Bucharest on Tuesday night before going on to score a hat-trick.

He was given another chance from the spot against Stoke when referee Mike Dean ruled Nicolas Otamendi had been fouled by Ryan Shawcross in the box midway through the first half. This time he made no mistake – firing high past Shay Given to put his side ahead.

Just ten minutes later and Aguero was at it again, the red-hot hitman rising high to head Kevin De Bruyne’s pinpoint centre past Given.

City were well in control but handed Stoke a route back in the game three minutes into the second half when Raheem Sterling grappled with Ryan Shawcross in the box and Dean again pointed to the spot.

Bojan made no mistake from 12 yards and the Potters began to press in search of an equaliser.

But they were unable to breach the City defence, with John Stones enjoying an impressive performance alongside Otamendi.

And the Potters’ hopes of snatching a point were ended four minutes from time when Nolito converted from close-range after good work from fellow substitute Kelechi Iheanacho.

The Spain international then added his second and City’s fourth in injury time with another close-range finish after being played in by Sterling.


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