MANCHESTER, England — Manchester City strolled to a 5-0 win over Burnley at the Etihad Stadium on Monday thanks to two goals from Phil Foden.
Burnley were always facing a tough task with Sean Dyche missing seven senior players because of injuries or contract issues and able to name only seven substitutes, but City still made light work of their visitors in their second game back after the Premier League’s resumption with Foden and Riyad Mahrez both scoring twice. David Silva was also on target.
The result means Liverpool cannot win the title with victory over Crystal Palace at Anfield on Wednesday but will be crowned champions if City drop points at Chelsea on Thursday.
City have little left to play for in the Premier League, but Foden certainly does. He will hope to fill the void left by David Silva when the Spaniard leaves at the end of the season after 10 years at the Etihad Stadium, and he has made a strong case to Guardiola, scoring three in the first two games after lockdown. Guardiola says he will have to rotate heavily to look after his players during the final weeks of the campaign and that should mean more chances for Foden, who was outstanding here — particularly one reverse pass in the buildup to Silva’s goal.
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Guardiola needs his whole squad to get through what will be a hectic end to the season and he will not have wanted to see Sergio Aguero hobble off. He was able to leave the field by himself but, at the very least, he will be a doubt for the trip to Chelsea on Thursday.
Manager rating out of 10
7 — The City manager has not been shy about voicing his concern about his players’ fitness after three months off, and he backed it up with his team against Burnley. Guardiola made eight changes and Ederson, David Silva and Mahrez were the only three players to keep their places from the win over Arsenal. The scoreline suggested it was the right decision.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Ederson, 7 — Out of his area to make a headed clearance inside 30 seconds. Burnley didn’t manage a shot on target.
DF Joao Cancelo, 7 — Barely had any defending to do. Booked for a challenge on Matej Vydra in the second half.
DF Oleksandr Zinchenko, 7 — Got forward well and had one shot that deflected just wide with Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope beaten.
DF Fernandinho, 7 — Back in the centre of defence, the Brazilian sprayed a fabulous pass out to Mahrez in the buildup to the Algerian’s goal.
DF Nicolas Otamendi, 7 — Burnley only rarely made it into City’s half and the Argentinian spent most of the night on the halfway line.
MF Rodri, 7 — Passing was assured for most of the night. Started a lot of City attacks from in front of the back four.
MF David Silva, 8 — Clattered by James Tarkowski early on. Made a good chance for Bernardo Silva and scored the fourth goal from close range.
MF Phil Foden, 9 — Making his fourth Premier League start of the season, opened the scoring with a drilled left-footed finish from the edge of the box before getting a second after the break.
FW Riyad Mahrez, 8 — One of three players to keep his place from the win over Arsenal, he scored a wonderful individual goal after destroying Charlie Taylor. Scored a second from the spot.
FW Bernardo Silva, 7 — Missed City’s first big chance of the night when he skewed his shot wide from a good position.
FW Sergio Aguero, 6 — Won the penalty after VAR brought play back following a challenge from Ben Mee, but the Argentinian limped off after the challenge.
FW Gabriel Jesus, 6 — Flashed one effort wide after replacing Aguero on 45 minutes.
DF Aymeric Laporte, 6 — A quiet 30 minutes in deputising for Fernandinho.
MF Kevin De Bruyne, 7 — Looked dangerous after coming on for Mahrez after 61 minutes.
FW Leroy Sane, N/R — His 11 minutes after replacing Foden were his first of the season following his cruciate injury.