Man City make predictably light work of Brighton

De Bruyne scores after 68 seconds as Seagulls get their wings clipped by clinical champions

Manchester City celebrate after Sergio Aguero makes it 2-0 against Brighton. Photograph: Nigel Roddis/EPA

Manchester City celebrate after Sergio Aguero makes it 2-0 against Brighton. Photograph: Nigel Roddis/EPA

 

Manchester City 4 Brighton & Hove Albion 0

Kevin De Bruyne netted after 68 seconds and Sergio Aguero struck twice as champions Manchester City strolled to a comprehensive 4-0 victory over Brighton.

Aguero, who has now scored five in four Premier League games this season, also set up City’s fourth for substitute Bernardo Silva in a one-sided encounter at the Etihad Stadium.

The only downside for City was the loss of Aymeric Laporte with a serious-looking knee injury in the first half.

The defender, a day after being named as the best left-sided centre-back in the world by manager Pep Guardiola, was injured in a challenge on Adam Webster.

Laporte had been hopeful of making his France debut in the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Albania and Andorra, but that now looks in doubt.

City have already lost Leroy Sane to a long-term knee injury this season and will be anxious Laporte’s problem is not as bad.

The injury took the shine off an otherwise fine afternoon. City got off to a flying start as Oleksandr Zinchenko played in David Silva and the Spaniard’s cutback was tapped in by De Bruyne with barely a minute played.

Bernardo Silva scores Manchester City’s fourth against Brighton. Photograph: Lindsey Parnaby/AFP/Getty
Bernardo Silva scores Manchester City’s fourth against Brighton. Photograph: Lindsey Parnaby/AFP/Getty

With that head start secured, City then had the luxury of controlling the rest of the game at the tempo they desired. They did not need top gear as they claimed most of the possession and patiently carved out further chances.

Aguero dragged a shot wide, Riyad Mahrez had an effort blocked and De Bruyne missed the target.

Brighton, to their credit, tried to play fluid football when they did get the ball but their attacks amounted to little. Solly March curled a shot well over and Leandro Trossard delayed an attempt too long.

City should have doubled their lead when Raheem Sterling pulled the ball back for David Silva but the veteran surprisingly poked wide from in front of goal.

Laporte’s afternoon came to a premature end as Webster, making his Premier League debut, launched a rare Brighton charge. The Frenchman came across to cut off the run but banged his knee in the tackle and went down in agony. He left the field on a stretcher and, with John Stones still unavailable, Fernandinho was pressed into makeshift defensive action.

City’s flow was not affected and the second goal arrived three minutes before the break. Mahrez played in De Bruyne with a deft back-heel and the Belgian’s ball was seized upon by Aguero, who took two defence-fooling touches before smashing emphatically past Mat Ryan.

Trossard might have pulled one back early in the second half but he failed to make clean contact and Fernandinho headed away.

Aguero then gave another lesson in finishing as he curled home a sublime third for City from the edge of the area after some neat interplay between Zinchenko and David Silva.

City were completely at ease for the remainder of the game and De Bruyne and Aguero volleyed over before Bernardo Silva came off the bench to wrap up the scoring 11 minutes from time.

Bernardo had only been on the field a matter of seconds after replacing namesake David when he was set up by Aguero and he fired low into the far corner.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.