MAN CITY 2, AFC BOURNEMOUTH 1
Even with a much-depleted line-up, there was no derailing Manchester City from their bid to win the Carabao Cup for a fourth successive season.
They edged to victory against Championship club AFC Bournemouth at an empty Etihad with goals from debutant Liam Delap, at 17 years and 229 days, and Phil Foden who, aged 20, was one of the more senior players.
It was a great experience for the kids as Guardiola, aware of a punishing schedule with an injury-ravaged senior squad, turned to youth with five teenagers in his starting line-up as City secured a four-round tie next week at Burnley.Embed from Getty Images
Delap, the England U17 international and son of former Derby, Southampton, Stoke City and Eire international Rory, was handed a debut and there were also places for Taylor Harwood-Bellis, Adrian Bernabe, Eric Garcia and Tommy Doyle.
Guardiola said: “All of them played incredibly well, Taylor, Tommy and Liam.
“Liam is 17 years old and a different striker in terms of his physicality and being good in the air.
“We have seen in training how good a finisher he is and I am confident for him in the future, but he has a lot of things to improve.”
Guardiola added the success of the young players is great for the academy in terms of scouting and recruitment of these players.
Also making his bow was American international goalkeeper Zack Steffen as Guardiola played only three of the side that won at Wolves on Monday in their league opener.
Kyle Walker, who was named captain, Rodri and Phil Foden were the only remainers with new Spanish signing Ferran Torres given his first start.
Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling, however, were on the bench as back-up if plan B was needed.
City made a bright start as Torres and Riyad Mahrez were both denied by goalkeeper Mark Travers who each time spread himself superbly.
And it was no surprise when Delap broke the deadlock in the 18th minute.
Released by a superb diagonal pass from Foden, Delap showed incredible composure before firing his into the top corner of the net.
City were only ahead four minutes, however, as Surridge equalised with only his second senior goal for the Cherries who made six changes from their last game.
Set up by Dan Gosling, former Oldham Athletic loanee Surridge superbly turned Bernabe before finding the net with a low shot.
City lost Bernabe through injury nine minutes before half time – he was taken from the touchline on a stretcher – as he was replaced by Benjamin Mendy.
Surridge had two great chances to regain the lead, but each time his goal attempts were blocked, the latter when Steffen raced out of his box.
City, lacking inventiveness in the final third, made their second change on the hour when De Bruyne replaced Rodri.
And that was quickly followed by a third and final change when Doyle made way for Sterling.
City regained the lead with 14 minutes left.
Mahrez’s drive struck the base of the upright and rebounded to Foden who found the net with a first-time shot, his second goal in three days following his strike in the win at Wolves on Monday and his seventh in 14 games since football resumed in June.