Aston Villa dropped into the Premier League relegation places after they were thumped 5-0 by Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.
David Silva gave City the lead with a scrappy goal shortly before half-time and the home side increased their advantage in the second half after two harsh penalties – scored by Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez - were given against the claret and blues.
The spot-kicks sucked the life out of Villa and the Argentine duo both struck again to complete the rout which saw Villa drop into the bottom three on goal difference.
Villa boss Paul Lambert named an unchanged side from the one which lost 3-2 at home to Manchester United although Nathan Baker, replaced Derrick Williams on the substitutes’ bench after he recovered from a recent ankle injury.
City controlled the early stages of the game and threatened the Villa goal when Brazil right-back Macion volleyed a dangerous ball across the face of goal but nobody in a sky blue shirt could get a touch.
Villa had a clear-cut chance to opening in the 18th minute after Enda Stevens found some space on the left flank and floated a cross into the box in the direction of Christian Benteke.
The Belgium striker’s downward header seemed destined to bounce into the top-right corner but City keeper Joe Hart was somehow able to claw the ball away. However, that was as good as got for Villa.
Roberto Mancini’s side had looked dangerous from corners throughout the first half with Yaya Toure and Matija Nasatasic both heading over.
And it was from a Samir Nasri flag-kick that City took the lead two minutes before the half-time break when Villa failed to clear the lines and Silva bundled home from close range.
City doubled their lead in the 54th minute with a debateable penalty after assistant referee Adrian Holmes flagged for handball when Nasri’s corner struck Andreas Weimann's shoulder although TV replays showed minimal contact.
Aguero converted the spot-kick with a low shot into the bottom-right corner of the net, and City could not believe their luck when referee Jon Moss pointed to the spot for a second time in the 65th minute.
This time the decision was more clear cut as Barry Bannan’s hand touched the ball when he slid in on Silva inside the area and Tevez sent Guzan the wrong way from the spot.
City began to carve open the Villa defence open at will and added a fourth in the 67th minute on the counter attack when Guzan failed to keep out Aguero’s low shot at his near post.
The chances continued to come for City and they made it 5-0 in the 74th minute with a fine team goal which culminated in Nasri’s low cross for Tevez to tap home from close range.
A long-range shot from Brett Holman in the 85th minute was the best Villa could muster after the break while City were unlucky not to add to the total as Scott Sinclair and Tevez both went close late on.Subscribe to our Newsletter