Pep Guardiola quickly turned his focus towards Manchester United after Manchester City thrashed Fulham 4-0 in the FA Cup fourth round.
The game as a contest was effectively over inside the opening eight minutes, with visiting captain Tim Ream dismissed for a foul on Gabriel Jesus and Ilkay Gundogan converting the consequent penalty.
Bernardo Silva doubled the hosts’ and holders’ advantage before the interval at the Etihad Stadium, with Jesus’ quickfire second-half double putting the gloss on things.
Next up for City is the visit of bitter rivals United in the second leg of their EFL Cup semi-final, with Guardiola’s side boasting a 3-1 aggregate lead.
Reflecting initially on the clash with Championship promotion hopefuls Fulham, Guardiola said: “For a few moments, I thought it would be a tough game.
“They’re a team with a lot of courage but it was a bit different after the red card. They still tried to play but the game was over at 3-0.
— Ilkay Gündogan (@IlkayGuendogan) January 26, 2020
“The determination was always there and we will fight to win each competition.
“Always we score goals and have the ability to score. The problem this season has been conceding some goals, but it’s always good to score goals.”
Casting his mind ahead to Wednesday’s derby, he added: “Next is United and a chance to get to the final and that is our next target.”
Fulham boss Scott Parker conceded his side’s hopes of an upset were dashed by Ream’s moment of madness, the skipper left “devastated” by his curtailed afternoon.
“Everything we planned for we had to change after six minutes because of the red card,” he told BBC Sport.
“Tim Ream is obviously devastated. He has been immense for us this season. He made a mistake today. In the heat of the moment, you make decisions and sometimes you make the wrong ones.”
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