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Man City send Palace packing from FA Cup

Press Association logoPress Association 28/01/2017

Manchester City eased into the fifth round of the FA Cup with a 3-0 win at Crystal Palace.

City's erratic Premier League form has given many the confidence to challenge them but they convincingly outplayed Palace at Selhurst Park, where fine goals from Raheem Sterling, Leroy Sane and Yaya Toure secured victory.

Defeat leaves Palace with only Premier League survival to concentrate on - perhaps exactly what they need in the circumstances - but came with the latest reminder of how desperately they need to improve.

Club captain Vincent Kompany returned to City's starting XI, making his first appearance since suffering another injury in their 2-1 win at Palace at the same stadium in November.

There was also a full debut for AGBP27million signing Gabriel Jesus and a rare start for Willy Caballero over out-of-form goalkeeper Claudio Bravo.

The gulf in quality between the two teams was first demonstrated in the 10th minute when Toure, from a deep position, curled a perfectly weighted chip into the penalty area which David Silva calmly struck first time before watching goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey smother wide.

It was a moment of exceptional quality that gave City the lead.

From space in midfield in the 43rd minute, Jesus sent Sterling clear beyond Palace's defence, from where the forward retained his composure to control and comfortably finish beyond Hennessey.

Allardyce responded at halftime by replacing Christian Benteke with Loic Remy, but it was more than greater energy his team required.

Shortly after Fabian Delph had threatened when shooting wide from midfield after being played into space by Silva, and Palace's Joe Ledley had struck wide from similar range.

The outstanding Silva then strolled through midfield under little pressure in the 71st minute, but where others would have passed far earlier, he delayed until the final moment and played in Sane, who from a tight angle finished impressively.

Toure returned from his exile from City's first team to inspire their victory here in November, and two minutes into second-half stoppage time he added another with a superb free-kick.

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