Newcastle briefly had a go after the restart and Joe Hart did well to save Cisse’s shot which deflected off Vincent Kompany, but it was the nearest the visitors came to a goal all evening.
It was a matter of how many City could add to the score after the break, and that it was only two more goals – David Silva’s 8th and 9th of the season – was something of a surprise, given the Blues’ high standard of play. City went for quality rather than quality! Sergio Aguero made a brilliant powerful diagonal run from half way, and showed great strength (and honesty) to keep going to the edge of the box, despite being kicked in the back of the legs. His pass found Nasri on the edge of the box, and from the inside right position, he squared to Silva who deftly set himself, before coolly steering the ball past a wrong-footed Krul. It was delightful as it was exhilarating.
Two minutes later in the 53rd minute Silva bagged his 2nd of the match. Yaya Toure lofted a superb long pass to Sergio Aguero who chested the ball into the path of David Silva who smote a powerful low drive across Krul to make it 5-0. It was a brilliant strike of surprising power and directness from a player of such a delicate touch! Newcastle must have been dreading the remaining 37 minutes.
With Tuesday and Barcelona in mind, Manuel Pellegrini brought Navas on for Silva on the hour. In a double change we had the long awaited introduction of Wilfried Bony (for Aguero) who received a warm welcome both over the tannoy and in the stands. After a wonderful touch from Yaya, Bony would have marked his debut with a goal had it not been for an excellent save made by Krul with his left boot.
The chances for City kept coming: Mangala headed Silva’s corner wide; Samir Nasri, complete with smart new, number two razor haircut, and sharp side-parting, should have shot when he had a good opportunity, but took an extra touch and the Newcastle defenders closed in; Navas crossed and Dzeko’s effort was over; and Kolarov free kick was tipped round the post by Krul.
This was a very enjoyable game, and a top draw performance from City. We moved the ball quickly and with subtle changes of pace which Newcastle could not handle. We looked far more measured for having Yaya Toure back in the side. His absence and indeed his return have emphasised what a huge positive influence he is on this team. While that is the case and he has the quality to play to such a high standard, City should be looking to keep one of our greatest ever players on board. With Yaya at in the autumn of his career at 32, of course a succession plan should be in place, but why not bed in his replacement alongside him, especially if so-called FFP is ruled unlawful this spring? City would face fierce competition from Real Madrid and possibly Chelsea for Paul Pogba, but that is the level of quality we need to replace a great player.
The gap to leaders Chelsea is now five points, and the nervousness of their manager is very apparent with his every utterance. Come on City.