Thu | Nov 15, 2018

City keeps quadruple hope alive

Published:Monday | January 29, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Cardiff City's Sean Morrison tackles Manchester City's Raheem Sterling (left) after he got past Cardiff goalkeeper Neil Etheridge during their English FA Cup fourth round match at Cardiff City stadium in Cardiff, Wales yesterday.

LONDON (AP:)

Even though Pep Guardiola will not admit it, Manchester City has an increasingly serious chance of completing the quadruple this season.

Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling scored as City advanced to the fifth round of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win over Championship team Cardiff yesterday.

It was the second time this week that City had beaten a second-tier opponent. The runaway English Premier League (EPL) leader saw off Bristol City in the semi-finals of the League Cup to clinch its first final under Guardiola.

With a commanding 12-point lead in the EPL and a favourable draw in the form of Swiss side Basel in the Champions League round of 16, every victory from here on will increase talk of an unprecedented quadruple for City.

When asked if City could achieve the quadruple, Guardiola made his feelings clear.

"No. They asked me if we would be invincible in the Premier League and I said no," Guardiola told the BBC. "I do not have enough players, I have players out injured. It is impossible."

Chelsea will join City in today's draw after Michy Batshuayi's double paved the way to a comfortable 3-0 fourth-round victory over Newcastle.

De Bruyne's clever free kick gave City an early lead before Sterling doubled the lead shortly before half-time. But City was dealt a blow when Leroy Sane was forced off injured at the break.

Having been put through on goal in first-half stoppage time, Sane was scythed down by Cardiff midfielder Joe Bennett, who was fortunate to receive just a yellow card.

"Referees have to protect the players and not just my players, all players. Where there is fault, there is fault, and when it is dangerous, it is dangerous. You are not more brave for kicking," Guardiola said. "Sane will be out. I am not sure how long for, I am not a doctor."

Bennett was eventually sent off as he received a second yellow card for another poor challenge on City youngster Brahim Diaz in the closing stages.