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City Xtra

Pep Guardiola sweating on fitness of two Manchester City stars after 6-3 win over Manchester United

Harry Winters

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Pep Guardiola sweating on fitness of two Manchester City stars after 6-3 win over Manchester United

Manchester City are sweating on the fitness of both Rodri and Kyle Walker.

The Premier League Champions battered rivals Manchester United at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday afternoon, as hat-tricks from both Erling Haaland and Phil Foden extended the Sky Blues' unbeaten start to the campaign.

Pep Guardiola's side were amazingly 4-0 up at half-time, after two goals from both eventual hat-trick scorers.

Foden opened the scoring after just eight minutes with a smart finish at the near post.

Haaland doubled City's lead with a towering header in the 34th minute, before making it 3-0 with a stretching finish at the far post minutes later.

Despite Antony scoring for United shortly after half-time, both Haaland and Foden would score their hat-tricks in the second-half.

The Norwegian sealed his third City hat-trick in the 64th minute, while Foden scored his first Premier League hat-trick in the 72nd minute.

As Pep Guardiola made several changes, a quick-fire late double from Anthony Martial made the scoreline slightly more respectable for Erik Ten Hag's team.

Erling Haaland scores against Manchester United. (Premier League)
Erling Haaland scores against Manchester United. (Premier League)

Sunday's victory was Manchester City's third successive win over their local rivals, as the Blues ended United's four match winning streak in emphatic fashion.

The win leaves City just one point behind league leaders Arsenal, although injuries to both Rodri and Kyle Walker could have slightly dampened Pep Guardiola's spirit.

After intense speculation, the absence of Rodri from the Manchester City matchday squad was confirmed when team news was released at the Etihad Stadium.

The defensive midfielder, who has become key to Pep Guardiola's side, missed Sunday's victory due to a calf injury.

Pol Ballus of The Athletic reported that the Spain midfielder suffered the issue in training on Friday.

Speaking pre-match, Guardiola confirmed the 26 year-old injury problem: "Something in his (Rodri's) leg - (I) didn't want to take the risk. A little bit more than niggles."

Kyle Walker was also forced off with an apparent injury shortly before half-time on Sunday afternoon.

The full-back, who has struggled with injury since the start of the season, was replaced by summer signing Sergio Gomez.

After receiving treatment following a collision, the 32 year-old was forced to kick the ball out of play shortly after, and was subsequently substituted.

Walker and Rodri potentially join a growing list of City injuries, with England duo John Stones and Kalvin Phillips both currently sidelined.

City did though welcome Aymeric Laporte back to action this weekend, with the Spain international featuring for the first time this season from the bench.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Manchester City, Pep Guardiola, Kyle Walker, Rodri, Manchester United, Premier League

Harry Winters
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