Sizzling City batter Blues at Eastlands

Roberto Mancini saw free-scoring City warm up for the Manchester

derby in devastating style. Nedum Onuoha scored his first league

goal of the season and Emmanuel Adebayor also weighed in with a

brace. With Carlos Tevez scoring his 27th of the season from the

penalty spot and also getting a touch to Onuoha’s header to score

his 28th, City secured a comfortable victory. They have now scored

14 goals in the last three games which will put them in good heart

for the match against Manchester United on Saturday. Guest of

honour at the game was former City goalkeeper Bert Trautmann, 86,

who broke his neck in the victory against Birmingham in the 1956 FA

Cup final. He saw City dominate the first half and Adebayor found

the sidenetting after being released by Tevez, who was looking for

the return pass. Birmingham again found themselves on the back foot

after 14 minutes with Tevez firing wide following good link up play

involving Craig Bellamy and Adebayor. The visitors then got

themselves in a muddle at the back but Adebayor could not take

advantage and failed to test Maik Taylor. City maintained the

momentum and Adebayor turned quickly in the area after 33 minutes

only to see Roger Johnson and Taylor combine to block his shot.

Five minutes later Tevez made the breakthrough with his 27th goal

of a remarkable first season at the club. The Argentina striker

scored from the penalty spot after Scott Dann was adjudged to have

bundled over Adebayor. Tevez stepped up and sent Taylor the wrong

way with his effort to put City in the driving seat. They went 2-0

ahead in the 40th minute when Onuoha was left unmarked as Adam

Johnson swung in a corner. The full-back thought he scored with a

firm downward header and wheeled away in delight but Tevez got the

last touch before the ball crossed the line. However, Birmingham

pulled a goal back two minutes later with Cameron Jerome heading

home following a cross from James McFadden. City responded

immediately with Adebayor making it 3-1 in the 43rd minute when he

got on the end of Bellamy’s delivery with Taylor out of position.

They almost extended their lead in the 50th minute after Onuoha got

on the end of a free-kick from Bellamy but saw his header go over

the bar. Play switched back down the other end and Keith Fahey

should have scored when Shay Given failed to deal with a cross but

the striker headed wide. Tevez then squandered a good opportunity

in the 60th minute after Bellamy had put Roger Johnson under

pressure. The ball broke to the City striker and he raced on only

to get a heavy touch and Taylor was able to gather it up.

Birmingham were making a decent fist of it, however, and Fahey

rattled in a shot that was blocked by Given’s legs. Then Tevez

thought he had scored in the 64th minute only for Taylor to claw

away his excellent free-kick from 20 yards. Tevez saw his close

range effort parried by Taylor in the 71st minute but Bellamy

spooned the rebound into the crowd. City went further ahead in the

74th minute with Onouha shrugging off a couple of half-hearted

challenges before sending a shot beyond the despairing Taylor.

Birmingham were being stretched and Adebayor secured his brace two

minutes from time after running from deep before beating Taylor.