Revenge is sweet! City smash Latics for five to progress in Capital One Cup
By Aaron Leggott
There were plenty of broken hearts when Ben Watson headed home during injury time to clinch the FA Cup for Wigan in May, but there is an increasing feeling that the Wembley wrongs are being rewritten after Jesús Navas smashed in City's 12th goal in three games, and the fifth of the night yesterday as the Blues pushed the Latics aside with ease.
Goals from Edin Džeko and Yaya Touré, as well as a brace on his home debut for Stevan Jovetić secured a comfortable route into the fourth round of the Capital One Cup as Manuel Pellegrini looks to fight on all four fronts this season.
There was also rare first team appearances for Marcos Lopes and Dedryck Boyata, whilst Micah Richards returned from injury to play a full 90 minutes.
City started brightly, and against a Wigan side that made many changes, the deadlock was nearly broken on five minutes after Richards forced a good save out of Lee Nicholls.
Nicholls, who was making his debut for Owen Coyle's side, also did well to prevent Boyata from grabbing a goal from the resulting corner a minute later.
City had a number of chances during the first half but a lack of quality finished meant the first goal didn't come until 33 minutes, when Džeko was found brilliantly by Fernandinho. The Brazilian's lofted pass left the Latics' defence for dead, giving Džeko the simplest of chances to smash the ball past Nicholls.
Going in at half time, City were clearly the dominant side, and one player certainly impressing was 17 year old Lopes, who is certainly destined for big things in football.
The Blues started the second period in the same fashion as the first, and it didn't take long for a second goal to come around. Stephen Crainey will have thanked the woodwork as he nearly scored an own goal, before Jovetić grabbed his first goal in sky blue. A scruffy goal, but they all count as the Montenegrin bundled home from Richards' effort.
The game became rather stale after the second goal, so who better to liven it up than Yaya Touré. After his unbelievable performance in the middle against United on Sunday, he secured the victory on 76 minutes with yet another stunning free kick from 20 yards, giving Nicholls no chance in the Wigan goal.
City were starting to run riot, and after Jovetić grabbed his second of the game from close range, Navas produced an immediate impact from the bench after fellow substitute Álvaro Negredo tore open the Wigan defence with a beautiful ball for Navas to fire past Nicholls.
Tougher tests are ahead, but recent signs are encouraging as Pellegrini's style looks to be finally setting in shape.