EPL

Man City the pass masters in Norwich thrashing

By Sports Desk August 22, 2021

Manchester City returned to form in style on Saturday and almost matched a Premier League record in a 5-0 hammering of Norwich City.

It was a typically dominant display from Pep Guardiola's team, who had 16 attempts compared to Norwich's one and had 66.9 per cent of the possession.

Tim Krul's own goal after seven minutes opened the floodgates, before Jack Grealish's inadvertent finish saw the £100million signing open his City account.

Aymeric Laporte made it even more comfortable, before Raheem Sterling and Riyad Mahrez rounded off the victory.

In true Guardiola fashion, City attempted 730 passes, completing 684 of them – an accuracy of 93.7 per cent.

That is the second-highest passing accuracy Opta has on record in a Premier League match since 2003-04, with the highest being 94.2 per cent, set by City in a 4-3 win over Newcastle United in May.

Ruben Dias attempted (114) the most passes, while centre-back partner Laporte completed the most (111).

Gabriel Jesus, who provided two assists, led the way in terms of chances created, with three, while Grealish was tied with Ilkay Gundogan for crosses from open play (four).

The former Aston Villa star attempted 43 passes, completing 41 of them (95.3 per cent), with 40 of those coming in Norwich's half.

City ended a run of three defeats in a row in competitive games without scoring stretching back into last season, and Guardiola said it was just reward for the work his champions have put in.

"This result was the consequence of how many good things we have done," Guardiola said.

"We are still not at the top – there are still many things to do. We trained, we were refreshed and I'm happy for these first points.... hopefully they will not be the last!"

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