Arsenal 1-3 Manchester City - Arsenal's woes continue as City book semi-final berth
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 22: Phil Foden of Manchester City celebrates after scoring their sides third goal with teammate Joao Cancelo during the Carabao Cup Quarter Final match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Emirates Stadium on December 22, 2020 in London, England. The match will be played without fans, behind closed doors as a Covid-19 precaution. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

Manchester City's Carabao Cup domination continued as they cruised to a fourth consecutive League Cup semi-final with a dominant victory over a struggling Arsenal side.

Goals from Gabriel Jesus, Riyad Mahrez, Phil Foden and Aymeric Laporte made for an early Christmas present for Manchester City, who remain en route for a fourth consecutive Carabao Cup title.

Story of the Match 

Tonight's fixture spelt the fourth meeting between Pep Guardiola and Mikel Arteta since the latter left his post as Manchester City assistant manager to take up the role of head coach at the Emirates

It was a year yesterday that Arsenal confirmed Arteta's appointment and, whilst the early signs were promising, things have gone downhill since.

The Gunners currently sit 15th in the Premier League, having lost eight of their opening 14 fixtures, leaving Arteta as the current bookmakers favourite to be the next Premier League manager to get the chop.

With his job on the line, Arteta would've been asking for a quick start from his side, but they got the exact opposite, finding themselves a goal down with little over three minutes on the clock.

Gabriel Jesus - returning to the starting XI having missed the weekend win over Southampton with toothache - got himself on the scoresheet for the first time in his last eight appearances, getting on the end of Oleksandr Zinchenko's cross and powering a close-range header past Rúnar Rúnarsson.

The Icelandic stopper was left visibly disappointed with his efforts, feeling as though he should've done better.

The goal gave Manchester City the impetus through the opening exchanges, dominating the ball in typical Pep like fashion through the opening half-hour, without creating any chances of note.

The inability to create chances has cost City on numerous occasions already this season, and it proved an issue once more as Arsenal found themselves level completely against the run of play.

A deep cross from the left from Gabriel Martinelli was half-cleared by American Zack Steffan however the ball found its way to the Brazilian once more, and he didn't make any mistake second time around.

His cross found the unmarked Alexandre Lacazette in the middle, with the Frenchman's header flying past a helpless Steffan to bring the hosts back into the game.

Questions have to be asked of the returning Aymeric Laporte though, with the Manchester City man at fault for letting Lacazette slip his grasp.

The goal brought a new lease of life to a struggling Arsenal side, but it was the visitors who should've retaken the lead just shy of half time.

Phil Foden's miscontrol allowed the ball to find its way through to Jesus who, with just the keeper to beat, saw his effort saved superbly by Runnarson, atoning for his earlier error.

The second half began as the first had, with Man City back on top in terms of possession of the ball, and the soon found themselves back ahead in rather fortunate fashion.

Riyad Mahrez' trickery won his side a freekick right on the edge of the box, however, his tame effort to the keeper's side should've been dealt with routinely by Rúnarsson. It was anything but.

The Arsenal keeper let a routine catch slip through his grasp as the hosts fell behind once more.

Guardiola's side have been known for their ruthless ability to take advantage when they are on top and, whilst Manchester City have struggled to do that so far this campaign, they did exactly that as they furthered their lead just four minutes later.

Whilst there was an element of luck about the first two, this was just superb.

Fernandinho's inch-perfect through ball found the run of Foden, with the young Englishman finishing sublimely with an exquisite dink over the onrushing Rúnarsson to all but end the game as a contest.

Three became four after 73 minutes as Laporte atoned for his defensive error, turning home Foden's deep cross as the Gunners got their offside trap all wrong.

4-1 is how it ended, as Pep made it 3-1 in the battle between master and student. But could it be his former boss who struck the final nail in Arteta's Arsenal coffin?

Key Takeaways

Perfect Christmas gift for Pep

A place in the semi-final draw would've been the main priority for Pep tonight, but the manner of the victory will make the Spaniard's Christmas dinner taste that little bit better.

City were back to their clinical best tonight and, with their defence as stable as it's ever been, could this be the result they needed to kickstart their quest back to the top of the Premier League table?

What's gone wrong for Arteta?

The Gunners faithful were optimistic heading into this season, and rightly so having picked up their 14th FA Cup in the summer.

But, despite impressing in their opening day win over Fulham, things have quickly turned sour at the Emirates, with Arsenal sitting a lowly 15th heading into Christmas.

Arteta's days look to be numbered, with the Spaniard hoping for a Christmas miracle to turn this season around.