MANCHESTER CITY 5, BARNSLEY 0 – FA Cup Quarter Final
A trio of first half goals ensured that City enjoyed a comfortable route into the FA Cup semi-finals with Carlos Tevez enjoying a starring role after a controversial end to his week. As with Leeds, City brushed aside their Championship opposition with ease and can now look forward to a trip to Wembley.
Roberto Mancini didn’t know much about Carlos Tevez’ run-in with the police after he was reportedly arrested on Thursday night for driving while disqualified but was in no doubt that Tevez was vital to City’s FA Cup and league prospects this season.
He said: “I don’t know anything about the newspapers and I haven’t spoken to him about it but if it has this effect on him I hope the police can stop him every day!
“I wanted to play with only Edin up front to give Carlos a rest but I decided to use both of them today.
“It’s important that Carlos continues to score because we need his goals for the rest of the season. Carlos has another year on his contract but he’s said many times he wants to go back to Argentina.”
Mancini confirmed that Tevez was withdrawn with what looked like an injury after he asked to be substituted during the second half.
The Italian claimed that he wouldn’t be watching Sunday’s clash between United and Chelsea at Old Trafford as he knew both teams but was ready for the possibility of a City v United final.
“We could face United, Chelsea or Wigan in the semi-final. In the semi final or final you should face a strong team. It could be perfect to have a final against United. Why not?”
It came down to the man of the moment, Tevez, to unlock the Barnsley defence with his predatory instincts rewarding City with an early lead after he stabbed home the loose ball after David Silva’s 11th minute flick was palmed onto the post after Yaya Toure’s lob had put the Spaniard through.
The Championship strugglers were starved of possession throughout the early stages and made things worse for themselves when David Perkins gave the ball away in midfield in the 27th minute and City pounced on the break.
Edin Dzeko’s well timed pass put Carlos Tevez through and the Argentine slid the ball to Aleksandar Kolarov at the back post to finish emphatically.
It was all over on 31 minutes after Silva exchanged passes with Nasri and Kolarov on his way into the area and handed Tevez another easy tap-in.
Tevez could have extended the lead in the 37th minute for his hat trick but Luke Steele was alert and made the save.
The Argentine made amends for his first half miss to finally earn his 5th City hat trick in the second half with a simple sweep inside the back post after Nasri’s unchallenged run past ex-City winger Kelvin Etuhu and cut back from the left flank in the 50th minute.
It took until the 56th minute for City ‘keeper Costel Pantilimon to be forced into a save by the visitors when Barnsley substitute Jacob Mellis’ shot made the Romanian dive to his left to reach his effort.
Pantilimon was in action again 5 minutes later with two saves in a minute from Ryan Tunnicliffe and Mellis again to the delight of the travelling Barnsley fans who kept supporting their team even after they knew it was all over after Tevez’ hat trick goal.
City were in no mood for slacking, however, and David Silva made it 5-0 in the 65th minute after forcing home a rebound from his own parried shot off Steele after exchanging passes with Tevez.
Substitute James Milner could have made it 6-0 with 5 minutes to go but his stunning left foot strike hit the post long after City had reverted to cruise control to see the game out.