Premier Cool Impact: Manchester City vs. Arsenal

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    Guardiola successfully overloaded the flanks

    The Spanish manager ensured his side outnumbered Unai Emery’s side out wide and it led to the Citizens creating several dangerous openings leaving the north London side stretched. City’s great start prompted Emery to switch from his starting 3-4-3 tactic to a four-man defence.   

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    Deadly Aguero overwhelmed Gunners

    Having netted after 24 seconds in City’s 2-1 mid-week loss at Newcastle United, the Argentine forward got in on the scoring act within a minute of the kick-off by scoring after 47 seconds. He doubled The Citizens' advantage just before half-time to crush Arsenal’s hopes of going in at the break level. It was a blow that Emery’s side never recovered from and the second half saw City pile on the pressure until Aguero sealed his hat trick in the 61st minute, ending the match as a contest. 

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    Creative Sterling unlocked away side

    While Aguero got the goals and most of the plaudits, Raheem Sterling’s impact in creating the striker’s second and third goals cannot be understated. The wideman‘s exemplary movement off the ball bamboozled Stephan Lichtsteiner for City’s second, while his change of pace saw him go past his marker before delivering a pin-point ball for the deadly Argentine to seal his hat trick. 

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    Fernandinho's tactical fluidity helps City

    The Brazilian showed great awareness over the entirety of the encounter to provide a strategic master class for his side. Ostensibly deployed in central defence, he surged forward into midfield whenever City had possession of the ball to create an extra man in the middle of the park - with Kyle Walker then tucking in to form what looked like an unorthodox back three. Whenever City lost possession, Fernandinho retreated back into his primary role and City returned to a back four. This tactic could have backfired with a less disciplined and tactically astute player, but certainly not with Fernandinho who once again proved his flexibility and understanding of the game to deliver the goods.