Manchester City 5-0 Newcastle United: Sterling double moves Citizens one step closer
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Raheem Sterling of Manchester City scores their side's fifth goal during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Newcastle United at Etihad Stadium on May 08, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Manchester City put their European woes behind them on Sunday afternoon, as they cruised to a 5-0 victory over Newcastle United in the Etihad sunshine.

Story of the match

Manchester City entered the game knowing that the Premier League remained their only hope of ending the season with silverware, following their late collapse against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu on Wednesday night.

But despite the pain of yet another UEFA Champions League failure lingering around the Etihad Stadium, the fines were in fine voice, knowing that they could move three points clear at the Premier League's summit after Liverpool dropped points against Spurs on Saturday night.

The Citizens were quick out of the blocks, but it was Newcastle who was left ruing a huge missed opportunity to open the scoring just shy of the 10-minute mark. Allan Saint-Maximin's deep cross to the back post was met by Chris Wood, but his header was straight at Ederson. A warning sign for the home side.

It was City who missed the next big opportunity, this time it was Aymeric Laporte who found himself unmarked eight yards out, but his first-time effort flew wide of the upright. 

A further chance went begging 10 minutes later, another fantastic ball from Kevin De Bruyne found Joao Cancelo arriving at the back post. The Portuguese defender met the ball sweetly on the volley, but couldn't steer his first time effort on target.

City finally made the breakthrough moments later, as Ilkay Gundogan floated a ball into the arriving Cancelo who this time opted against an effort on goal instead cushioning a header to the arriving Raheem Sterling to head home from close range.

Newcastle looked to have equalised five minutes later when Chris Wood fired home following a goalmouth scramble. The away ends celebrations were cut short by the linesman's flag though, with Bruno Guimares correctly deemed to be offside in the buildup.

City ensured that they made the most of their reprieve, as  Laporte doubled the host's lead just before half-time. It's not one that Martin Dubravka will be keen to see back, as the Newcastle stopper spilt Gundogan's long-range effort into the path of the arriving Ruben Dias and Laporte, with the latter firing home from all of two yards out.

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Although it's unlikely that the Spaniard would admit it, goal difference would've been on the minds of Manchester City as they took to the field for the second half, with the Citizens undoubtedly aware of the importance that a superior goal difference may hold come the end of the season.

City dominated the ball in the early exchanges of the second period, registering 99% of the possession in the opening eight minutes of play. But despite a dominant performance with the ball, they offered little to worry Dubravka and the Newcastle backline.

The hosts entered the game as the league leaders in goals from set-pieces, and they added another to that tally when Rodri powered home a near-post header from Kevin De Bruyne's corner to all but secure the three points for Pep Guardiola's side.

Both sides wrang the changes late on, with Phil Foden and CJ Egan-Riley thrown into the mix for Manchester City, whilst Kieran Tripper, Josh Murphy and Callum Wilson entered the fray for the visitors.

Wilson really ought to have pulled one back for Newcastle late on after being played through by Saint-Maximin, but with just Ederson to beat, the Englishman fired straight at the Brazilian.

It was the fresh legs of Phil Foden that added a fourth for Manchester City late on, as he reacted brilliantly to turn home Oleksandr Zinchenko's misfired shot.

The scoring didn't stop there for City, who ensured that they would end the weekend three points, and four goals ahead of Liverpool as Jack Grealish and Foden combined before Raheem Sterling fired a sublime effort into the top corner to add his second, and Manchester City's fifth.

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The result means Manchester City now sit three points clear of Jurgen Klopp's side with just three-games remaining. They face tough trips to Wolves and West Ham before welcoming Aston Villa to the Etihad Stadium on the final day of the season.

Manchester City: Ederson; Cancelo, Dias, Laporte, Zinchenko; Rodri, Gundogan, De Bruyne; Sterling, Jesus, Grealish

Newcastle United: Dubravka; Krafth, Lascelles (C), Targett, Burn, Targett; Guimaraes, Longstaff, Joelinton; Almiron, Saint-Maximin, Wood